Fossil Amber with Rare Multiple Wireworm Inclusions

Name: Insects in fossil amber; Insecta, Order Coleoptera, Family Elateridae

Age: Pliocene to Pleistocene

Size (25.4 mm = 1 inch): 41 mm long, 25 mm across, 14.0 grams Inclusions 10-15 mm long

Location: Andean Uplift Region, Andes Mountains, Colombia

This fossil amber contains an unusual assemblage of what are commonly termed “wireworms”, grubs of beetles of the Family Elateridae, or Click Beetles. These larvae pass a long life (two or three years) in the soil, feeding on the roots of plants, and they often cause much damage to farm crops of all kinds, but especially to cereals. Wireworms are known by their broad heads and cylindrical or somewhat flattened bodies. The three pairs of legs on the thoracic segments are short and the last abdominal segment is, as is frequently the case in beetle grubs, directed downwards to serve as a terminal proleg.

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