Dung-baited pitfall traps were used to conduct a survey of dung beetles (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) in alpaca pastures located at Virginia State University, Petersburg, VA, from May to September in 2010 and 2011. Beetles were collected weekly and identified to species. Of the 3,136 beetles collected, 11 species were represented: Onthophagus taurus Schreber, O. pennsylvanicus Harold, O. hecate hecate Panzer, Copris minutus Drury, Phanaeus vindex MacLeay, Dichotomius carolinus L., Sphaeridium scarabaeoides L., Aphodius erraticus L., A. fimetarius L., A. (Nialaphodius) nigrita F., and A. (Labarrus) lividus Olivier. The most common species found in both years was O. taurus, which accounted for 43% and 59% of the populations in 2010 and 2011, respectively. Paracoprid tunneler beetles dominated the collection in both years. Both native and exotic species were abundant, indicating that the introduction of exotic dung beetle species has not been detrimental to native populations. The species abundance and diversity fluctuated throughout the summer, likely related to weather patterns.
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Vol. 49 • No. 2