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A 30-million-year-old wasp and an unknown flower were discovered

A 30-million-year-old wasp and an unknown flower were discovered

It is reported to be an amazing discovery Review Historical Biology: A flowering plant of an unknown species trapped in amber next to a parasitic wasp, part of a new species.

Discovered in the Dominican Republic, this incredible amber – a fossilized resin secreted by conifers millions of years ago – hides a relatively small female flower inside, with a long stem.

Scientists were able to establish that this plant actually belongs to the family Euphorbiaceae, which includes 300 different species, of which no fossils have ever been recorded. flower, for which a new species is named Plaugenidia minimaEstimated to be 30 million years old.

Flower, wasp and larva

The discovery could have stopped there, it would have been extraordinary already. But scientists had more to put in their mouths with this piece of amber. It suggests that next to this unknown flower were a wasp and developing fly larvae Scientific alert. 1 out of 3.

A funny parasitic wasp, named Hambletonia dominicana, was already studied in 2020. It belongs to the family. EncyrtidaeEspecially strong and aggressive towards full-sized insects.

Better than two insects and a single flower, amber actually reveals a true ecological microcosm. Modern members of the fossil plant are actually pollinated by tiny wasps today, suggesting that the wasp found in amber may also play this role. For its part, the wasp may have used the plant to lay an egg there, which, once hatched, would have swallowed the fly larvae to survive. 30 million years ago nature in all its works.

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