The dor beetle, for many people, is the archetypal 'beetle'. It has the classic beetle shape and colouration, being oval in shape with a shiny domed body, with a blue sheen. The thorax is smooth but the wing cases are grooved longitudinally. The legs are also shiny black and strong with noticeable spikes. The head is small and the antennae short with fan-like tips. The dor beetle, more popularly known as the dung beetle, belongs to a sub-family called scarabs. These beetles were regarded as sacred by the ancient Egyptians. The man whom has come to be most closely associated with the study of the dor beetle was the French entomologist Jean-Henri Fabre (1823 – 1915). Fabre was an amateur with no formal scientific training, but he was fascinated by insects and their behaviour. His books were readable and his enthusiastic style of writing made them very popular. He is regarded to this day as one of the most influential people in the study of insects.
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