Charlotte's Great Great Great Grandmother: The Face Of A 49-Million Year Old Spider

May 20, 2011


WARNING: Spider face.

Ever wonder what the face of a 49-million year old spider trapped in amber might look like? You're nasty! God, why can't you just imagine a naked celebrity or something like a normal person? Your family: you have shamed them, shamed them bad.

University of Manchester researchers, working with colleagues in Germany, created the intricate images using X-ray computed tomography to study the remarkable spider, which can barely be seen under the microscope in the old and darkened amber.

Writing in the international journal Naturwissenscaften, the scientists showed that the amber fossil -- housed in the Berlin Natural History Museum -- is a member of a living genus of the Huntsman spiders (Sparassidae), a group of often large, active, free-living spiders that are hardly ever trapped in amber.

"The results were surprising," Penney said. "Computed tomography produced 3D images and movies of astounding quality, which allowed us to compare the finest details of the amber fossil with similar-looking living spiders.

Hey, whatever gets me closer to some dinosaur-cloning DNA, I'm down. You think I don't already have a secluded tropical island ready for my Jurassic Park? Hell no, those things are f***ing expensive! I figured I'd just raise a couple smaller ones my closet and take it from there.

Hit the jump for a pretty cool video of the 3-D reconstruction of Charlotte.

Astounding 49 Million-Year-Old Face of Spider Frozen in Amber [foxnews]

Thanks to Allyson, who doesn't want to see any spider's face but Spiderman's. HOLY SHIT -- PETER PARKER IS THAT YOU?!

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