Myrmeleontiformia are an ancient group of lacewing insects characterized by predatory larvae with unusual morphologies and behaviours. Mostly soil dwellers with a soft cuticle, their larvae fossilize only as amber inclusions, and thus their fossil record is remarkably sparse. Here, we document a disparate assemblage of myrmeleontiform larvae from the midCretaceous amber (99 Ma) of Myanmar, evidence of a considerable diversification. Our cladistic analysis integrating extant and extinct taxa resolves the fossils as both stem- and crown-groups. Similarities between extinct and extant species permit inferences of larval ethology of the fossil species through statistical correlation analyses with high support, implying that morphological disparity matched behavioural diversity. An improved understanding of the evolutionary history of antlions and relatives supports the conclusion that hunting strategies, such as camouflage and fossoriality, were acquired early within the lineage.
|Titolo:||Diverse Cretaceous larvae reveal the evolutionary and behavioural history of antlions and lacewings|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2018|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01.01 - Articolo su rivista|