Thursday, June 14, 2018

Prehistoric frogs in amber surface after 99 million years

Frogs trapped in amber for 99 million years are giving a glimpse of a lost world. The tiny creatures have been preserved in sticky tree resin since the end of the Age of the Dinosaurs. The four fossils give a window into a world when frogs and toads were evolving in the rainforests. Amber from Myanmar, containing skin, scales, fur, feathers or even whole creatures, is regarded as a treasure trove by palaeontologists. The fossil record of the earliest amphibians is sparse, which makes the discovery particularly valuable for science. Dr David Blackburn of the University of Florida, who worked on the fossils alongside Dr Xing, said being small and living in a tropical forest makes the likelihood of ending up in the fossil record "pretty low". "Frogs have been around on earth for approximately 200 million years," he said The four specimens provide a record of life in the forests of what is now Kachin State, Myanmar during the Cretaceous. As well as the frogs, which the researchers have named Electrorana limoa, they found plants, spiders and insects...MORE

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