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HomeMongolia NewsUnknown Cicada from the Cretaceous

Unknown Cicada from the Cretaceous

Photo credit: Günter Bechly.

This beautiful specimen of a fossil cicada was found in the limestones of the Lower Cretaceous Crato Formation of north-east Brazil. It is about 115 million years old and represents a still undescribed new family of the suborder Cicadomorpha (Menon et al. 2007). Among the ten thousands of fossil insects that I personally studied from this locality there were many specimens of this new taxon.

Enormously Increasing Knowledge

The abundance of Cretaceous insects is a good example of an enormous increase in our knowledge of the fossil record within the past decades, which nullifies Charles Darwin’s attempt to explain away the gaps and discontinuities in the fossil record with our incomplete knowledge. As he said: “Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely graduated organic chain; and this, perhaps, is the most obvious and gravest objection which can be urged against my theory. The explanation…

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