Supply of dung beetles for the performance of a ring test as a precondition for the implementation of an OECD Guidance Document
The objective of this project sponsored by the German Federal Environment Agency was the improvement of existing laboratory tests with dung beetles and dung flies. It was aimed at identifiying a second dung beetle species for standardised laboratory tests that should belong to the ecological group of ‘tunnelers’. However, it was not possible to establish laboratory cultures with the species Euoniticellus intermedius and Euoniticellus fulvus. In contrast, two new test methods with the established test species Aphodius constans were developed. Both in a prolonged larvae test as well as in an adult reproduction test, an increased sensitivity was found in comparison to the established OECD test with larvae. In addition, 15 dung fly species belonging to the family Sepsidae were tested (with up to eight different populations), using a modified version of the existing OECD test guideline and ivermectin as a model substance. The sensitivity of the dung flies differed strongly, both within as well as between species. Acute and sublethal endpoints could be established. A further outcome of this project was the start of a ring test using the dung beetle species Onthophagus nuchicornis.