Onthophagus vacca is a 'spring active' dung beetle from Europe which is being trialled for the first time in the Wilson Inlet Catchment (possibly first in Western Australia). This small beetle has the potential to single handedly protect our waterways from eutrophication, minimise fertiliser needs and stop the scourge of bush flies in our catchment from October to December.
This beetle (along with Bubalus bison) is currently being monitored at the Denmark Agriculture College by WICC. It is being fed one litre of chemical free, aged cow dung once per week. The holes, sequestered dung and soil it is bringing to the surface are being carefully monitored by WICC and the (DAC) to determine soil preference (sandy vs clay) and seasonal activity for our catchment. If this beetle passes the grade WICC will be investing (under the National Land Care Program) to establish this beetle in suitable properties and soil types throughout the catchment. Watch the video below to see the initial release of 23 females and 7 male O. vacca beetles in sandy soil!!!!