Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department / School


First Advisor

Edward U. Balsbaugh, Jr.


The frequency and succession patterns of coleopterous species in cattle dung were determined for two localities in eastcentral South Dakota during 1969 and 1970. Thirty-nine species of beetles were screened as potential predators of the face fly, Musca autumnalis De Geer, a pest of cattle and horses; and 1 Coleoptera, 1 Hymenoptera and 1 nematode were screened as parasites of the same host. Succession studies of insects inhabiting bovine manure revealed that four families of Coleoptera were recovered from the manure and, in descending order of abundance, were Hydrophilidae, Staphylinidae, Scarabaeidae, and Histeridae. The hydrophilids were first to invade freshly deposited manure, whereas they staphylinids preferred somewhat older and dryer manure, 72 hours or older. Both scarabs and histerids were recovered in constant numbers in all ages of manure. The mortality of face fly eggs and larvae attributed to natural conditions averaged 21.8%. The staphylinids, Philonthus cruentatus Grav., P. rectangularis Sharp, and Aleochara bimaculata; and the histerid, Hister abbreviatus Fab. were significant predators of face fly eggs and larvae. Only two insect parasites of the face fly were recovered. Experimentally the beetle, Aleochara bimaculata Grav., had a parasitism rate of 1.08% while Aphaereta pallipes (Say), a wasp, parasitized 7.67% of the face flies to which it was exposed. Natural parasitism of M. autumnalis by the nematode Heterotylenchus autumnalis Nickle averaged 5.81%.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Face fly

Beetles -- South Dakota



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University

Included in

Entomology Commons