Scarabaeine Dung Beetles (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae): An Invertebrate Focal Taxon for Biodiversity Research and Conservation
Invertebrates constitute the bulk of known biodiversity on Earth and dominate virtually every ecosystem in terms of species richness, animal biomass, and critical ecological functions. They also represent a rich source of information for broadening and refining conservation strategies and for answering questions in biological research. Occupying an enormous variety of niches, and displaying an equally broad range of population, dispersal, and distributional traits, invertebrates present a multitude of ‘‘probes’’ for use in virtually any research setting. But the hyperdiversity of many invertebrate taxa, perhaps their most alluring feature for many of us who study them, nevertheless represents a challenge to the collection of large-scale data and the inclusion of these taxa in research and the conservation process.