Dung Beetle is the common name for beetles that are members of the Scarabaeidae family. These beetles breed, feed and tunnel in dung deposited on pastures. Through their activities, these beetles break up and bury the dung pat. This dries up the pat and removes it as a breeding site for pest flies. Hence, Dung Beetles are most efficient in reducing numbers of flies if the beetles disperse and bury the dung within a few days of its deposition before the flies can finish their development.
Dung Beetle populations can be decimated by the toxicity of manure from the use of de-wormers. So if you have Dung Beetles select a de-wormer that offers lower toxicity to beetles and other beneficials such as Quest®, Quest Plus or Cydectin® for cattle.
Tiny Mites (1/32” or less in length) are found practically everywhere, including the breeding sites of the Stable Fly and House Fly. Predaceous mites, such as those in the family Macrochelidae can be important natural enemies of these pest species. By feeding on eggs and young maggots, one mite can kill up to 36 House Flies per day.
Mites are among the first predators to colonize manure because they disperse by phoresy; i.e., they “hitch-hike” on other insects. Mites can be best used by conserving their natural populations by keeping manure dry with good ventilation and good drainage. Avoid the use of larvicides unless their effects are known to be limited to just the pest flies.
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Dr. Bill ClymerFort Dodge Animal Health, Dr. Roy EllisPrairie Pest Management, Dr. Kevin FloateAgriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Dr. Robert M. Miller, DVM, Dr. William QuarlesBio-Integral Resource Center. All illustrations 2006 Dr. Roy Ellis.
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