from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Any of various beetles of the family Scarabaeidae that form balls of dung on which they feed and in which they lay their eggs.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A type of beetle of the family Scarabaeidae noted for rolling dung into spherical balls and pushing it.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. any of numerous beetles that roll balls of dung on which they feed and in which they lay eggs


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • “According to Dr. Deadwood at the University of Boredom, the dung beetle represents the ancient pop invasion of the Rolling Stones—”

    The Welkening

  • About six inches in diameter, the amulet was a golden heart-shaped scarab, a dung beetle that, the sign said, ancient Egyptians used to symbolize rebirth.

    The Welkening


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  • Thanks c_b - bracket closed!

    September 28, 2009

  • (hernesheir, might want to close your bracket after dung beetle... :))

    September 28, 2009

  • "As I sat on a boulder at the edge of the road to Bandipore to the Gurais Valley and Nanga Parbat, I suddenly saw a mud-colored marble rolling across the grass surface of the track...I learnt later that it was a dung beetle, and that the 'marble' was made of dung of a consistency suitable to receive the beetle's eggs.
    T.M. Ward, Devon: "The Countryman (British agricultural quarterly) Winter issue, 1956, p. 702-703.

    September 28, 2009