“100-Million-Year-Old” Spider with Long Tail Discovered

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There seems to be no end to the variety of amazing creatures being discovered preserved in amber in Myanmar. We’ve written on a supposed “feathered dinosaur” (it was just a bird), beautiful flowers, and a tiny chameleon that have all been found stuck in the sticky tree resin that later hardened to preserve them. And now researchers have found a beautifully preserved spider with a tail longer than its body.

Apparently the new species “looks just like a spider, with common body parts including fangs and four [pairs of] legs that are specifically used for walking.” The spider also had spinnerets so it could produce silk. But, unlike living spiders, this one had a “tail” that was longer than its body. Researchers believe this spider could have used this “tail” as an antenna for sensing its environment, as other extant creatures use such structures today.

This spider was assigned an age of 100 million years, yet, interestingly, one researcher thinks there’s a chance they may not be extinct since the rainforest biome in southeast Asia, where they would be found (based on where they found this amber), isn’t a very well-studied area and the spider is very small. So they have no problem believing the same basic spider could have survived a supposed 100 million years without evolving!

Of course, this spider wasn’t preserved 100 million years ago. It was trapped in amber and then buried during the global Flood of Noah’s day about 4,350 years ago. So if it was discovered scuttling around the forest floor by researchers, it would not be very surprising.

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This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.

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