dung beetle

noun

Definition of dung beetle

: a beetle (such as a tumblebug) that rolls balls of dung in which to lay eggs and on which the larvae feed

Examples of dung beetle in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web My papa’s house furled and unfurled, high as a church steeple in some parts, and low as a dung beetle in others. Okwiri Oduor, Harper’s Magazine , 22 June 2022 Certain dung beetle females have even evolved horns that may be used for battling with other females in contests over access to males. Jake Buehler, Quanta Magazine, 2 Aug. 2021 Through a dung beetle’s compound eyes, stars appear as blobs, not as points of light. New York Times, 29 July 2021 Rosie Drinkwater, a molecular biologist and postdoc at Queen Mary University of London, decided to test another widespread connoisseur of DNA-rich body material, the dung beetle. Michael Price, Science | AAAS, 19 Feb. 2021 In one entry, a dung beetle climbs out of a dead man’s mouth; a jellyfish floats between buildings in another. Tim Diovanni, Dallas News, 23 July 2020 For the nocturnal African dung beetle Scarabaeus satyrus, this becomes a useful reference point. Fiona Mcmillan, National Geographic, 4 Nov. 2019 By limiting pesticides, natural biological systems that include dung beetles, earth worms and micro-organisms help rejuvenate soil health. David Mckenzie, CNN, 6 Mar. 2020 When there are lots of species of dung beetles around, and faeces vanish quickly, an ecosystem is assumed to be in good shape. The Economist, 11 Jan. 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dung beetle.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of dung beetle

circa 1634, in the meaning defined above

Learn More About dung beetle

Time Traveler for dung beetle

Time Traveler

The first known use of dung beetle was circa 1634

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near dung beetle

dung bath

dung beetle

Dungeness crab

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for dung beetle

Last Updated

3 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Dung beetle.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dung%20beetle. Accessed 11 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on dung beetle

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about dung beetle

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Commonly Confused Words Quiz

  • vector image of a face with thought expression
  • I went to the ______ store to buy a birthday card.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!