Sunday, January 26, 2020

Giant Bugs Ruled the Skies

Fossil of a Meganeuridae

The largest known insect resembled a dragonfly and fed off of other insects. The name "Meganeura" means large-nerved, which refers to the network of veins on the insect's wings.

Meganeura fossils were first discovered in France in 1880. The fossil was described and assigned its name by the French Paleontologist, Charles Brongniart in 1885. In 1979, another fine specimen was discovered at Bolsover in Derbyshire, England.

There were two species of this now extinct flying insect. The largest was Meganeuropsis permiana from the Early Permian, as indicated by the name.

The ‘griffinflies’ or Meganisopterans lived from the Late Carboniferous to the Late Permian, roughly 317 to 247 million years ago.

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