19 Oct 2023

The power of dung beetles on Kiwi farms and the push to spread them further

From Nine To Noon, 9:40 am on 19 October 2023
Geotrupes springer is one of the beetles being used on farms to deal with livestock manure.

Photo: ©Rainer Fuhrmann - stock.adobe.com

Dr Shaun Forgie wants to see dung beetles all over farms up and down the country.

The beetles carry off and bury animal manure and the tunnels they dig help water infiltrate the soil.

Exotic beetles have been allowed into the country since 2011 with 11 species granted Environmental Protection Agency approval.

Dr Forgie co-founded Dung Beetle Innovations in 2014 and has been helping farmers establish dung beetles on farms ever since. They have established beetles on more than 900 farms.

He says dung beetles should be a part of all farmers' toolboxes when trying to manage freshwater on their property.