We often hear about the history of animals but we rarely hear about the history of insects. We know a lot about the role dinosaurs played years ago, how certain animals adapted over time, what animals have gone extinct, and so forth. However, we don’t seem to know much about ancient insects.
How long have spiders been crawling through the cracks? Have ants been marching for centuries? We thought we’d find out. Rumor has it that insects crawled across the planet long before dinosaurs. With the help of a study published in the journal “Science” we educated ourselves on the history of insects.
We found out that we’ve actually been sharing the world with spiders for centuries. Proof of certain spiders can be traced back 570 million years ago. It is believed that they used to primarily live in and around water. With the majority of the world being water years ago, it makes sense that they would have to be able to survive within it.
Researchers have found evidence of “roachoids” that are likely ancestors of the different roaches that we know, and dislike, today. This evidence also reflects that mantids and termites are closely related to cockroaches. The history of these insects has been going strong for 230 million years but the cockroach we are familiar with dates back about 170 million years.
If any insect could have coined the phrase “creepy crawler,” it would be millipedes and centipedes. Millipedes can be traced back over 550 million years ago. This insect is considered the “mother of many bugs” and likely also lived primary in water just as spiders did. Clearly, they survived changing conditions for years. Apparently, having a lot of legs gives you a “leg up” on other insects.
The silverfish, a common enemy of homeowners everywhere, has been around for over 420 million years. (And we doubt it’s going anywhere) However, silverfish have changed over time and the ancestor of the silverfish we are familiar with today most likely surfaced about 250 million years ago.
Finding out that insects have been around for centuries doesn’t make them more appealing, but we have to admit, it’s pretty interesting.
If you have insects attempting to make history in your home, contact Amherst Exterminators today.