Nature Decomposers *Warning graphic photos & video*

Nature Decomposers.. ***WARNING GRAPHIC PHOTOS AND VIDEO***

Ya know that part in your life where if you didn’t do this you would have not seen that? Well, this is another classic case of that, and believe me, I have had a few of these.

If I didn’t go over to check out a broken limb in our front yard I would have not seen the decapitated leopard frog on the ground. While I was wondering how it got there, figuring an owl or hawk was on the limb and when it broke it dropped the frog,  something flew beside me and landed on the frog.

Let me introduce you to my newest discovery the Round Neck Sexton Beetle or American Burying Beetle, found right in our front yard.

Roundneck Sexton Beetle 1.jpg
Roundneck Sexton Beetle | Alice Mary Herden | Oct 2019

I have never seen this beetle before and it’s truly an amazing part of nature, which actually plays an important role in it.

** WARNING GRAPHIC VIDEO **

 

According to some websites when searching for this particular beetle, burying beetles/carrion beetles in some states they are endangered. These beetles are also used in forensic research!

These beetles will bury deceased animals and from my observation, they dig a hole and pull the animal into the ground.

Deceased squirrel is being buried by Round Neck Sexton Beetles
Deceased squirrel is being buried by Round Neck Sexton Beetles

These beetle must have a considerable amount of strength to be able to bury a small deceased animal like the squirrel in the above photo.

Leopard Frog completely buried by Round Neck Sexton Beetles
Leopard Frog completely buried by Round Neck Sexton Beetles

It takes around 24-48 hours for the beetles to completely bury the animal. So next time you see a mound of dirt, this very well could be a burying beetle burial mound.


Links
https://nature.mdc.mo.gov/discover-nature/field-guide/carrion-beetles-burying-beetles

https://nature.mdc.mo.gov/discover-nature/field-guide/american-burying-beetle

https://www.fws.gov/Midwest/endangered/insects/ambb/abb_fact.html