Big Bugs


Well, it’s not quite on the scale that your average monster insects in comics or ’50s sci-fi movies are, but this bug is still awfully big

A fearsome fossil claw discovered in Germany belonged to the biggest bug ever known, scientists announced Tuesday.

“We have known for some time that the fossil record yields monster millipedes, supersized scorpions, colossal cockroaches, and jumbo dragonflies,” he added. “But we never realized, until now, just how big some of these ancient creepy-crawlies were.”

“This is an amazing discovery,” Braddy said.

The find shows that arthropods — animals such as insects, spiders, and crabs, which have hard external skeletons, jointed limbs, and segmented bodies — once grew much larger than previously thought, said paleobiologist Simon Braddy of the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom.

The size of a large crocodile, the 390-million-year-old sea scorpion was the top predator of its day, slicing up fish and cannibalizing its own kind in coastal swamp waters, fossil experts say.

Jaekelopterus rhenaniae measured some 8.2 feet (2.5 meters) long, scientists estimate, based on the length of its 18-inch (46-centimeter), spiked claw.

That’s over eight feet long, people. Almost as tall as I am! It all just goes to prove: giant underwater prehistoric lobster-scorpions are bad news and should be stomped on as often as possible, preferably while screaming shrilly.

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