Overview

Comprehensive Description

rufipesAcrossusAphodiusScarabaeidaeColeopteraInsectaArthropodaAnimalia

Aphodius rufipes (Linnaeus, 1758)

Materials

Type status: Other material Occurrence: recordedBy: A. V. Frolov, L. A. Akhmetova ; individualCount: 1 ; Location: country: Russia ; stateProvince: Astrakhan'; locality: Dosang environs, left bank of Akhtuba River, floodplain ; decimalLatitude: 46.91 ; decimalLongitude: 47.91 ; Event: samplingProtocol: cow dung washing ; eventDate: 2006-10-06 ; Record Level: collectionID: urn:lsid:biocol.org:col:34969; institutionCode: ZIN ; collectionCode: Coleoptera

Ecological interactions

Feeds on

Cattle and wild herbivore dung.

Distribution

Transpalearctic species.

  • Frolov, Andrey, Akhmetova, Lilia (2013): A contribution to the study of the Lower Volga center of scarab beetle diversity in Russia: checklist of the tribe Aphodiini (Coleoptera, Scarabaeidae) of Dosang environs. Biodiversity Data Journal 1, 979: 979-979, URL:http://dx.doi.org/10.3897/BDJ.1.e979
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Distribution

National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Type of Residency: Year-round

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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Aphodius rufipes

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 0
Specimens with Barcodes: 1
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Conservation Status

National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: NNR - Unranked

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: GNR - Not Yet Ranked

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Wikipedia

Aphodius rufipes

Aphodius rufipes, the night-flying dung beetle, is a species of scarab beetle, first recorded by the zoologist Carl Linnaeus as Acrossus rufipes in his 10th edition of Systema Naturae.

Contents

Etymology

The species name rufipes is Latin for "red foot". It shares this name with a number of other species including the spider Sphodros rufipes.

Its British common name "the night-flying dung beetle" is given due to it being common for it to mistakenly find its way on its night-time flight from the dung-fields, to artificial lights among human habitation.

Description

The outer body ranges from dark brown to black, while the legs are black with a red tinge. At 9–13 millimetres (0.35–0.51 in) in size, it is one of the largest of the Aphodius genus. It has ten ridges on each of its wing-covers (called elytra).[1] It has a shovel-shaped head which it used to move the earth when it burrows.

Behaviour

This species feeds and breeds in various types of dung, and in the British Isles it is usually seen between the months of April and October.[1] The beetle is particularly sensitive to light. During the daytime hours or under artificial light, it instinctively burrows into the nearest moist soil or preferably fresh dung. From at least 4 centimetres (1.6 in) underneath the soil it is able to sense that night has fallen, since it soon emerges from the soil when all light is extinguished, and prepares for its night-time flight in search of mates or new sources of food.

Symbiosis

The beetle has a symbiotic relationship with at least one species of mite, which is able to latch-on to the beetle's body beneath its hard shell, and remain securely attached when the beetle is burrowing or flying. The beetle thus provides the mites with safety and transport, while the mites are known to feed on mould in the dung, that would otherwise cause the beetle's source of food to decompose.

References

  1. ^ a b Collins Complete Guide to British Insects by Michael Chinery, 2005, page 116
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