Large Winged Bug Fossil (Moth) in Chiapas Amber (Mexico)
The highlight of this piece is the large winged bug inclusion, possibly a moth, measuring approximately 1 cm by 1 cm inside the relatively clear piece of amber measuring about 2 cm by 2 cm with a mass of about x grams. It is quite rare for such large insects to remain trapped as they could often struggle free, and even more rare for them to remain in such exceptional condition with good visibility inside a high-clarity piece of amber. Includes a 3D Floating Frame display case with a stand.
Chiapas amber is fossilized resin from the extinct tree species Hymanea. It was formed during the early Oligocene from around 23 to 30 million years ago in the area known today as Chiapas, Mexico. Although younger than many other ambers, Chiapas amber is considered a premium amber due to many advantageous properties. Compared to common Baltic amber, which dominates ~95% of the amber market, Chiapas amber is substantially harder. This superior hardness is desirable for more durable jewelry that is more resistant to chips, cracks, scratches or shattering as well as enables much finer detailed carvings by the local master artisans who take great pride in their work and celebrate with annual amber festivals and competitions. The high perylene content drives an attractive blue-green glow under UV light from fluorescence and phosphorescence.
Some scientists believe that forest fires and other natural disasters led to these trees expel large amounts of sap. It was common for small bugs and plant material like leaves or flowers to become trapped and fossilized within the amber. Occasionally, larger insects, frogs, lizards, birds, or mammal remnants became encased as well. Over time many pieces washed into the nearby ocean, grew oysters on the surface, and hardened over millions of years under heat and pressure from being buried under ocean sediments. Amber has been valued in Mexican culture at least as far back as the Mayans who documented it on inventory scrolls alongside other valuables.