Unearthed by a miner in Myanmar, a 100-million-year-old amber encased cockroach was discovered by researcher Ziggi Ellenberger. Initially thought to be a praying mantis, this predatory cockroach was found encased in amber within a valley well known for dinosaur age amber. Having living amongst dinosaurs, this cretaceous insect trapped in some amber and got encased for millions of years.
Described by Peter Vršanský from the Geological Institute in Slovakia as a perfectly preserved specimen, exotic and an ancient relative of the praying mantis. Scientists hope this will tighten the lineage and reconstruct the history of these creatures even more.
Using its long neck and spineless legs, researchers suggested that this insect aggressively hunted its prey by voraciously chasing it down. It lived alongside the dinosaurs and hunted its prey at night. Utilizing its rotating head with large eyes and large neck it can be quite a forceful adversary. This cockroach also has an extra set of modified large eyes on the top of its head to compliment its large mandibles, long legs large wings and narrow body.
During the Cretaceous period a few different species of predatory cockroaches had evolved, however the only connection left with living species is with the praying mantis. Archaeologists are trying to paint a picture of what this ancient ecosystem may have looked like by uncovering other amber samples containing various other large insects and vegetation samples.
Dr. Peter Vršanský, in an interview, told BBC Earth that “nothing similar runs on Earth today.” The lineage of prehistoric cockroaches can be traced down to praying mantises today. However nothing as predatory has ever been discovered like this before.
After the first look I knew it was something new (…) Nothing similar runs on Earth today.
He states that this cockroach was vicious in its way of hunting, preferring to hunt alone on higher grounds, using its long feet to grab its prey swiftly. Do you they had personalities like the cockroaches from a recent study which researchers found to exhibit their own distinct personalities?