Copris Incertus factsheet
Size: up to 15mm
Dung preference: fresh, firm cattle and horse dung. Also likes runny, dairy dung. Prefers larger volume dung for building nests in.
Features: glossy black shell, a shovel-shaped head with a horn, females have smaller horns, long lines down their wings (differentiating them from black beetle grass grubs), and squeaks when agitated.
Origin: Central and South America.
Flying time: flies at night, works in dung during the day.
Seasonal activity: emerges in spring and nests. Quieter through the summer with most activity happening just after rain from February to May/June.
Nesting: adults build underground chambers 15-35cm deep into the soil. Females and males work together to fill the chamber with dung which the female divides into 4-10 balls. She lays a single egg in each then sits guarding the balls from fungus, earthworms, or other soil invertebrates.
Life cycle: development from egg to adult takes 8-12 weeks depending on the soil temperature.