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Images of 300 million-year-old insects revealed

Last Updated: Wednesday, September 26, 2012 - 22:10

London: Stunning 3D images of 300 million-year-old insects have been uncovered by scientists at a British university.
By placing fossils in a CT scanner, and taking over 3,000 X-rays from different angles, the scientists were able to create 2,000 slices showing the creatures in cross section, Sky News reported.

From these slices, the researchers created 3D digital reconstructions of the fossils, which allowed them to learn more about their lifestyle, biology and diet.

One of the insects, characterised by a large number of sharp spines, is a new species and genus which no longer exists.

The other is an early predecessor of one of the great survivors of the insect world, the cockroach, and is one of the best preserved examples of this age ever seen by insect palaeontologists.

The University of Manchester scientists said that judging from its "well preserved mouthparts" it survived by eating rotting litter from the forest floor.

Both are members of a group called the Polyneoptera - which includes roaches, mantises, crickets, grasshoppers and earwigs.


First Published: Wednesday, September 26, 2012 - 22:10
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