100-million-year-old Insect Fossil Discovered

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The fossil can be observed as having special features, like extra space in its jaw, for carrying cycad pollen.

Researchers have just come across a fossil of a beetle that is almost 100 million years old. This discovery can lead to a better understanding of the pollination process during that age.

Plants from the Sperpatophyta class could have been the first ones to use other creatures for pollination.

The Current Biology journal shows the clear relationship between these plants and insects.

Scientists have come across an extremely old insect, trapped in amber for almost 100 million years, having in its proximity particles of pollen.

The beetle can be observed as having special features, like extra space in its jaw, for carrying the plant’s pollen.

One of the researchers at the Bristol University in the UK stated that these beetles might have helped pollinating plants from the times of Dinosaurs. Also, he indicated that this find could mean that these bugs might have helped with plant breeding long before bees or other pollinators appeared.

One of the tests that the scientists performed on the beetle was one for the study of its evolutionary biology and therefore explore its relation to its descendants.

This resulted with the find that the beetle is closely related to one of the insects still living in Australia, which pollinates one of the cycads found there.

This discovery suggests that there might have been a strong relationship between these insects and the cycads, in order for successful fertilization of that plant.

All said above lead scientists into thinking that more of these specimens are still to be found.


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