Dramatic Museum Dragonfly Fossil

Araripegomphus andreneli

Insect Order Odonata, Family Araripegomphidae

Geological Time: Lower Cretaceous, Late Aptian-Cenomanian (108-92 million years ago)

Size (25.4 mm = 1 inch): Dragonfly fossil has 64 mm wingspan, Head-Body length 56 mm, Matrix: 115 mm by 140 mm

Fossil Site: Crato Formation, Nova Olinda Member, Ceara, Brazil

Fossil Code: GF79

Price: Sold


Araripegomphus Dragonfly FossilDescription: The Araripe Basin of Brazil is home to a fantastic array of exquisitely-detailed Early Cretaceous fossils, some of which have been preserved in three dimensions. While the entire formation has until the last decade or so been termed the Santana Formation, David Martill has separated out the slightly older insect-bearing strata as the Nova Olinda Member of the Crato Formation. Quarrying operations for the purposes of obtaining paving stones exposes the remarkable insect fauna in much the same way that quarrying for lithographic limestone in Solnhofen has afforded a panoply of wonderfully-preserved Jurassic fossils in Germany. In addition to the many orders of insects, spiders, scorpions, decapod crustaceans, and many plants have been found. Interestingly, to date no pterosaurs or terrestrial vertebrates have been found, in stark contrast to the overlying Santana Formation deposits. This specimen is a member of the Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies). The Odonata are well-represented in the fossil record, with some 700 species known. They have their origin in the proto-Odonates from the Carboniferous. Meganeuropsis from the Permian of North America, with a 75 cm wingspan, was the largest insect on record. This impressive dragonfly is well-displayed on its large matrix, and is a fine example of this genus named after the Araripe Basin.

Insect Fossil Purchase Information

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