Fine Gnat Insect Fossil from Yixian Formation


Insect Order Diptera, Suborder Nematocera

Geological Time: Lower Cretaceous (~125-121 m.y.a.)

Size: Insect fossil is 6 mm long (wingspan is 11 mm) on 85 mm by 55 mm matrix

Fossil Site: Yixian Formation, Huangbangi Valley, Beipiao, Liaoning Province of China

Fossil Code: SI048

Price: Sold

Cretaceous Gnat Insect Fossil from Yixian FormationYixian Formation in Liaoning Province in northeast China has remained one of the hottest paleontology study sites on earth the past two decades, and is perhaps most famous for discoveries of feathered dinosaurs. From feathered dinosaurs to birds to reptiles with color patterns, the fine lake silts of Liaoning preserved the most intricate of life from more than 100 million years ago. Relatively hard to preserve insects are well represented in the diverse Liaoning biota.

This Dipteran fossil is a gnat with many fine details preserved. It has been estimated that one million midges weigh one pound. Amazing then that such a tiny critter can be so pesty to humans, as they probably were to creatures of the Cretaceous. Amazing too that so delicate an animal could be so well preserved in the fine silt that formed Yixian. The piece of shale also contains a number of less well preserved insects and the ubuiquitous small fresh water clams common at the site.

Order Diptera comprise mosquitoes, gnats, midges and others flies. This huge insect order is estimated to have a quarter million species. Diptera are hypothsized to have evolved from Mecoptera with the first true Dipterans known from the fossil record in the Middle Triassic.

Fossil Purchases

Click to enlarge

Fossil Mall Navigation:
l Home l Fossils for Sale Map l Museum and Rare Fossils l How to Buy Fossils l

Navigate by Fossil Category:
l Trilobites
l Ammonites l Fish Fossils l Invertebrate Fossils l
l Crinoids and Echinoderms l Insect Fossils l Dinosaur and Reptile Fossils l
l Cambrian Explosion Fossils l Plant Fossils l Stromatolites l
l Vertebrate Fossils l Fossil Amber l Trace & Ichnofossils l

l Fossils and Paleotological Science Information l