Dung beetles' seed dispersal

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New paper on secondary seed dispersal by dung beetles published

Many plants rely on animals to disperse their seeds. Animals feed on their fruit and drop the seeds with their feces. Then dung beetles get involved. Particularly in tropical ecosystems, dung beetles are important secondary seed dispersers. Roller beetles relocate them on the horizontally by rolling dung balls, containing seeds, away from the place where the feces was deposited. Tunneler beetles bring them underground. In West Africa, seed dispersal by dung beetles has never been studies. Together with Dr. Britta Kunz, now at the Biodiversity and Climate Research Center in Frankfurt/Main, Germany, Frank Krell published a study on the role of dung beetles for secondary seed dispersal in the Parc National de la Comoé, Ivory Coast. 4149 dung beetles were collected which are deposited partly here at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and partly at the Natural History Museum, London. The first page of the study with a summary of the results is here. For a pdf or the full study, please email Frank Krell.

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