The recently discovered Arachnida belongs to a missing species which has just been identified. The four 100 million years old spiders with tails have been discovered in a piece of amber.
The researchers announced the discovery of a strange spider specimen, which lived 100 million years ago and had a long tail, covered with hair. The origins of the identification of this new species are four primitive spider fossils, captured in amber 100 million years ago in the current Myanmar. The fossils were well preserved, and two studies have been already conducted on them and published in the journal Nature Ecology & Evolution.
These old spiders presented tails covered with hair similar to scorpions but also presented legs, claws and the appendices used to produce silk and spider nets similar to modern spiders.
As for their tails, the scientists believe that they were used for a better detection of the environment.
The 100 million years old spiders with tails are minuscule creatures given the fact that each fossil was about 7-8 mm long. Their tails were only 5 millimeters long. Scientists named the creatures Chimerarachne yingi, which is a reference to the Greek mythology’s Himera which was a hybrid creature.
According to Paul Selden, the author of one of the aforementioned studies conducted on the fossils, the tailed spiders represent an intermediate species between long-time extinct Uraneida tailed spiders that lived around 300 million years ago and the modern spiders species.
In opposition, there is the opinion of the author of the second study, Gonzalo Giridet from the Harvard University, who stated that the Chimerarachne yingi tailed spiders are themselves Uraraneida spiders.
Scientists, despite their contradictory theories, hope these newly discovered 100 million years old spiders with tails will offer them some valuable information regarding the evolutionary trend of the spiders which emerged on the planet with around 400 million years ago and are now present in 50,000 different species.