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Older than thought: Lacewings at 120 million years ago

New lacewing fossil/Prof.Dong Ren

In “A New Species of Fossil Silky Lacewing Insects That Lived More Than 120 Million Years Ago,” ScienceDaily, Oct. 5, 2011), we learn:

A team of researchers from the Capital Normal University in Beijing (China) and the Institute of Biology and Soil Sciences in Vladivostok (Russia) has discovered a remarkable silky lacewing insect from the Mesozoic of China.

The extant silky lacewings (the family Psychopsidae) may be recognized by their broad wing shape, dense venation, spectacularly patterned and hairy wings. Today, this family is very small, restricted only to southern Africa, southeastern Asia and Australia, but in the Mesozoic, it was much more widely distributed.

Compare with this pic I found: http://www.worldisround.com/articles/26350/photo19.html

A friend writes to say, “Seems that at this rate of evolution, we’d need trillions of years, maybe lots more, to see any substantial change,” offering this lacewing fossil from the present day.

It’s interesting that the winning bumper sticker for the Darwin lobby is “We have the fossils. We win.” Actually, they have the fossils and have a whole lot of explaining to do – or will when their current tenure bores retire.

See also: We need a new name for living fossils like this

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