Bizarre fossil parasite unearthed in China

Palaeontologists have discovered an unusual aquatic parasite from Jurassic-era China.

Jun Chen from Linyi University and colleagues identified the fossil remains of fly larvae which lived about 165 million years ago in what is now Inner Mongolia, China.

The larvae had a thorax that doubled as a sucking plate, allowing them to cling to the skin of salamanders. They also drank their hosts’ blood using mouthparts shaped like a sting. Such a body design has never been observed in any other insect.

Read more at Linyi University