Investigadores británicos confirmaron que unos filamentos de telaraña fósiles incrustados en una pieza de ámbar descubierta en el Reino Unido son los más antiguos que se conocen.



La pieza fue hallada por los buscadores de fósiles aficionados Jamie Hiscocks y su hermano Jonathan en el condado de Sussex del Este.

Ahora, un grupo de expertos confirmó que la telaraña conservada en la resina fósil data del periodo Cretácico, hace más de 140 millones de años.

El profesor Martin Brasier -que publicó su investigación en la revista de la Sociedad Geológica Británica- aseguró que es la pieza más antigua de la que se tiene constancia.

«La red fue reconstruida con un método que permite mirar dentro del ámbar con un microscopio a través de 40 ángulos diferentes. Después, esas imágenes múltiples se recomponen para recrear la telaraña», señaló el reportero de la BBC Jason Caffrey.

«Esta pieza de ámbar es muy poco común. Procede del principio del Cretácico, lo que la convierte en la más antigua con fósiles incrustados», apuntó Brasier, que es profesor de paleontobiología en la Universidad de Oxford.

«Las arañas que hicieron esta telaraña dejaban gotas pequeñas de una sustancia pegajosa a lo largo de la red para que sus víctimas quedaran atrapadas. De ese tipo de gotas ya teníamos algunas muestras, pero éste es el primer resto de red que nos llega», añadió.

Por otro lado, los estudios de Brasier revelaron que la araña que tejió la telaraña fósil estaría emparentada con las arañas de jardín actuales.

Según los científicos, este filamento quedó atrapado en resina de conífera tras un incendio y permaneció fosilizada en el ámbar resultante, donde se ha conservado hasta la actualidad.

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