Oldest Known Cave-Dwellers Are 99-Million-Year-Old Cockroaches

by Katherine J. Wu/Smithsonianmag.com

Cockroaches—among the hardiest of insects—may be among the species guaranteed to outlive us all. But perhaps even more intriguing than the future of these persistent pests is their unusual past. A pair of 99-million-year-old roaches are now the oldest known animals that unambiguously adapted to life in caves, according to a study published this month in Gondwana Research.

The discovery earns the bugs the unique honor of being the only cave dwellers ever described from the Cretaceous, the period spanning 66 to 145 million years ago and the final era of the non-avian dinosaurs.

Preserved in lumps of amber from the Hukawng Valley in Myanmar, the two newly described species, Mulleriblattina bowangi and Crenocticola svadba, both belong to the Nocticolidae family, a lineage whose members still scuttle around Earth’s caves today, according Nature News.

Boasting a pale body, stunted eyes and wings, and legs that lacked protective spines, Mulleriblattina was “clearly a cave inhabitant,” study author Peter Vršanský, a zoologist at the Slovak Academy of Sciences, tells Michael Marshall at New Scientist. The roach, he explains, presumably stopped investing in certain traits that were no longer useful in the cramped, dimly lit cave environment. In their place, however, the insect…


We See The World From All Sides and Want YOU To Be Fully Informed
In fact, intentional disinformation is a disgraceful scourge in media today. So to assuage any possible errant incorrect information posted herein, we strongly encourage you to seek corroboration from other non-VT sources before forming an educated opinion.

About VT - Policies & Disclosures - Comment Policy
Due to the nature of uncensored content posted by VT's fully independent international writers, VT cannot guarantee absolute validity. All content is owned by the author exclusively. Expressed opinions are NOT necessarily the views of VT, other authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors, partners, or technicians. Some content may be satirical in nature. All images are the full responsibility of the article author and NOT VT.


Comments are closed.