“This was a male wasp that suddenly found itself trapped in a spider web. This was the wasp’s worst nightmare, and it never ended. The wasp was watching the spider just as it was about to be attacked, when tree resin flowed over and captured both of them.” 100 MILLION YEARS AGO
Scientists have unearthed a completely new species of spider hiding in sand dunes on the Israel-Jordan border. With a legspan that stretches 5.5 inches, the spider, called Cerbalus aravensis, is the biggest of its type in the Middle East.
A quarter of a billion years ago, long before dinosaurs or mammals evolved, the 10-foot (0.3-meter) predator Dinogorgon, whose skull is shown here, hunted floodplains in the heart of today's South Africa. In less than a million years Dinogorgon vanished in the greatest mass extinction ever (the End-Permian Extinction, a/k/a "The Great Dying"), along with about nine of every ten plant and animal species on the planet.