Exquisite Lower Cretaceous Wasp Fossil


Insect Order Hymenoptera, Family Xyelidae

Geological Time: Lower Cretaceous (~125 m.y.a.)

Size (25.4 mm = 1 inch): Insect fossil is 9 mm long with 15 mm wingspan Matrix: 25 mm by 40 mm

Fossil Site: Yixian Formation, Beipiao, Shangyuan, Liaoning Province of China

Fossil Code: CF455

Price: Sold

Description: The Class Insecta is well represented in Liaoning and Hebei Provinces of China, with over 500 species referable to over 100 families based upon over 10,000 specimens. This fantastic diversity and exquisite detail is unprecedented throughout the world. This example is a superbly-preserved wasp, seen here in ventral view. This is a member of an extinct group allied with the sawflies. The sawflies are the longest-lived members of the Hymenoptera, with examples extending back to the Lower Triassic. The group gets its name from the saw-like ovipositor used by the female to deposit eggs. Note that the wings, antennae, legs and segmented abdomen are all preserved in incredible detail. The fidelity of preservation is attributed to the fineness of the sediment, making this a superb example of the insect life of some 125 million years ago.

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