According to a new study published recently in Scientific Reports, scientists have found two mating flies in amber,media BGR reported. As Gizmodo reports, the two flies are part of a large number of insects and cobwebs in amber, which come from sites in the southern hemisphere, including Australia. It is special because, after decades of research, many of the amber fossils found come from sites in the northern hemisphere, such as Myanmar.
No matter where they come from, amber fossils provide scientists with a unique opportunity to peer through the window of time. These well-preserved organisms have been protected by hard tree fluid for tens of millions of years.
“Amber is considered the ‘holy grail’ of this discipline because the creatures, preserved in a suspended animation state in perfect three-dimensional space, look like they just died yesterday – but in fact it’s tens of millions of years old and provides us with a wealth of information about ancient terrestrial ecosystems,” jeffrey Stillwell, lead author of the study and from Monash University’s School of Earth Atmosphere and Environment, said in a statement. “
The flies are just some of the new collections that include ancient ants, young spiders, and so on. The researchers even found two types of moss in amber. Discoveries like this allow researchers to study ancient species, as they did when they died, and often give them new insights into the lives and habits of small creatures trapped in amber.
“This is one of the greatest discoveries in Australian palaeontology,” Stilwell said. “This study gives us a deeper understanding of the prehistoric southern ecosystems of Australia and New Zealand from the late Triassic to the mid-Palaeonto (234-40 million years ago). “