Damselfly and ant in copal, stalactitic in form this petrified tree sap has been cleaned polished revealing the fauna within. The chaotic scene is of a varied and interesting procession of over thirty inclusions of insect life from the prehistoric forests of Madagascar. The colourful troop include many varieties of flying and crawling insects which have yet to be conclusively classified.Towards one end of the piece of copal is the inclusion of a large damselfly, its wings outstretched from the abdomen, this giving the appearance of the damselfly as thought frozen in the act of flight.
We often determine many of our specimens and inclusions of flora and fauna with the aid of the reference works particularly of Mr Andrew Ross’s, works, books and publications. Also we have had personal identifications carried in his department. Mr Ross started curating the amber collection at the department of palaeontology at the Natural History Museum, London in nineteen ninety three.
The only way scientists can date the ambers is by the location of the deposit. In which fossil strata they are found in, by dating this layer we can date the specimen fossil. However if the deposited formation or sediments containing the fossil ambers was deposited, then eroded at a later date and re-deposited it could be much older. Similarly there is now way of knowing when the ambers were first deposited, so again they could be much older. We can only date the fossil ambers and copal to the fossil layer it is lately found within.