When I walked the Via de la Plata in 2011, I kept encountering small determined beetles crossing my path. It wasn’t until my sixteenth day of walking, between Embalse de Encant├íra and Galisteo, that I finally saw one of the little guys in action and realized it was a dung beetle.

Dung beetle rolling a ball of dung

These beetles captured my imagination, and I’ve been meaning ever since to do a small print of a dung beetle, thinking it would make a nice little greeting card sized print.

A few weeks ago, I read an article that researchers in Sweden had discovered that dung beetles navigate using the Milky Way. In an odd sort of way, this confirms the many creation myths that feature the dung beetle (otherwise known as a scarab) as central to the creation of the world, rolling its ball of manure to form the Earth and its inhabitants.

How could I resist? The dung beetle print has now grown to full size, and the rough drawing is on the block.

Dung beetle rolling a ball of dung across the universe