100-Million-Year-Old Spider Attack

This is the only fossil ever discovered that shows a spider attacking its prey in its web. Image from: Discovery News

Discovery News recently reported on the discovery a 100-million-year-old spider attack in which both predator and prey are fossilized in amber:

“The piece of amber, which contains 15 [10+01] intact strands of spider silk, provides the first fossil evidence of such an assault, the researchers said. It was excavated in a Burmese mine and dates back to the Early Cretaceous, between 97 million [10+07] and 110 million [10+08] years ago.”

“‘This juvenile spider was going to make a meal out of a tiny parasitic wasp, but never quite got to it,’ George Poinar, Jr., a zoology professor at Oregon State University, said in a statement.”

“Both the spider and wasp species are today extinct. But the type of wasp (Cascoscelio incassus) belongs to a group that today is known to parasitize spider eggs, Poinor said. The attack on the wasp by the bristly orb-weaver spider, Geratonephila burmanica, might then be considered revenge.”

To read the full story in Discovery News, click here.

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