Palaeozoic insect nymphs: new finds from the Piesberg quarry (Upper Carboniferous, Germany)


Authors: Haug JT, Leipner A, Wappler T, Haug C

Published in: Bulletin of Geosciences, volume 88, issue 4; pages: 779 - 791; Received 7 December 2012; Accepted in revised form 17 June 2013; Online 11 September 2013

Keywords: Dictyoptera, nymph, hemimetaboly, blattoid, palaeo-evo-devo,

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We report fragmentary specimens from the Piesberg quarry (Upper Carboniferous, Northwestern Germany) that represent exuviae of nymphal blattoids (Dictyoptera). Most of the remains are isolated abdomina, one specimen also preserves a wing pad. The specimens document two developmental stages and include the smallest Palaeozoic blattoid nymph found to date. The specimens from the Piesberg quarry closely resemble other Palaeozoic blattoid nymphs, for example, specimens from the famous Mazon Creek Lagerstätte (Upper Carboniferous, Illinois, USA), at least as far as external morphology is concerned. As for preservation, the specimens from the Piesberg quarry show strong resemblance to specimens from the Lower Permian Elmo Lagerstätte (Kansas and Oklahoma, USA). The two Lagerstätten, although differing in age, appear therefore to be interesting candidates for a palaeoecological comparison. The find of immature insects at the Piesberg quarry is another example of fossilised development in arthropods from this Lagerstätte, other examples are known from Euproops, Arthropleura and Aphantomartus pustulatus


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