Illustrated Keys to the Dung Beetles of Maryland Simone N. Nemes and Dana L. Price Department of Biological Sciences, Salisbury University, Salisbury, MD 21801 Abstract Results The taxonomic community is aware of the diversity and ecological importance of dung beetles (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae). Currently, however there is no comprehensive guide to this subfamily in Maryland, or to the Mid-Atlantic Region. The purpose of this project is to create up-to-date taxonomic keys for the identification of Maryland dung beetles. This research will contribute to a “Taxonomic Guide of the Scarabaeoidea of Maryland”. The key is completed, and we are currently preparing it for submission to The Coleopterist Bulletin, a peer-review quarterly journal that documents the ecology and taxonomy of beetles. The key also includes anatomical illustrations for those who may be confused by some of the terminology in the characters (Figs. 4-5). Seven large, black and white drawings have been created to provide a representative for each genus (Figs, 7-12), each of which average between 10-20 hours of work. An example of the Tribal key is shown below (Fig. XX). Certain characters may be ambiguous, so I have drawn figures in order to improve usability (Figs. XX). Introduction I have created a dichotomous key to the tribes and genera of dung beetles of Maryland, which includes original illustrations. This key has been peer-reviewed and tested for accuracy in identification. The goal of this project is two-fold: 1) we would like to contribute this resource to the taxonomic community so that the identification of these species can be improved and streamlined; and 2) to document the diversity of dung beetle species in Maryland. This work is currently In Prep for publication. Figure 13a. Dorsal body plan illustration for the key. Figure 13b. Ventral body plan illustration for the key. Figure 4. Page from the dichotomous key. Figure 5. Materials and Methods Illustrations Using the Camera Lucida microscope (Fig. 1) I sketch a basic body plan of each specimen to make sure the proportions are correct. Afterwards, I free-hand the details while examining the specimen underneath a microscope. Figure 6. Creation of a dichotomous key Below are listed the steps I’ve taken toward creating this key. • Examined all specimens in the SU collection to write key characters • Visited to Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History (Fig. 2, Fig. 3) to examine the specimens there and test the keys • I have had the key peer-reviewed and tested by students. Figure 1. Camera Lucida Microscope Figure 12. Genera illustration for Ateuchus. Figure 7. Genera illustration for Copris. (Length: 8.0- 18.5 mm). Figure 8. Genera illustration for Melanocanthon. (Length: 6.0- 10.0 mm). (Length 5.5- 7.3 mm). Figure 2. Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History Acknowledgements Figure 8. Genera illustration for Dichotomius. (Length 19.8-28.2 mm). Figure 3. A drawer of specimens at the Smithsonian Museum Support Center Figure 9. Genera illustration for Canthon. (Length: 2.0- 20.4 mm). Figure 10. Genera illustration for Onthophagus. (Length: 3.0- 10.5 mm). I would like to thank the Henson School of Sciences and the Guerrieri Undergraduate Research Summer Program for giving me the wonderful opportunity to do this research. We thank Dr. Floyd Shockley and Dr. David Firth from the Smithsonian Institute National Museum of Natural History for providing invaluable resources for the completion of this project. We thank Brett Ratcliffe and Charlie Staines for their thoughtful comments and review of the key.