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New fossil insect in amber used 360-degree vision and sticky feet to find and snare its meals

Still Waters

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Posted (IP: Staff) ·

With bulging eyes, an elongated mouth and feet that oozed resin, a fossil insect identified by Oregon State University research is so different from anything alive today that it needed to be placed in its own, extinct family.

George Poinar Jr., professor emeritus in the OSU College of Science, named the insect Palaeotanyrhina exophthalma in a paper published in BioOne Complete. Encased in 100-million-year-old amber from Burma, P. exophthalma is a member of the Hemiptera order—a "true bug," Poinar said.

"Its eyes provided a clear, 360-degree view of its habitat so it could see prey that might appear from any side," Poinar said.


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