The Carboniferous Period


                                                                                                                                          Archimylacris is an extinct genus of cockroach. It lived on the warm swamp forest floors of North America and Europe 300 million years ago, in the Late Carboniferous times. Like modern roaches, this insect had a large head shield with long curved antennae, or feelers, and folded wings. Scurrying along the undergrowth, these would eat anything edible. Sometimes they would have fallen prey to amphibians and very early reptiles.


Delitzschala is an extinct palaeodictyopteran, the oldest known to science. It was discovered by two German entomologists in 1996. Delitzschala had a wingspan of just 2½ cm (1 in) and an irregular pattern of coloured spots on its wings. Although it was 320 million years old, these spots were still visible in the fossil. It is presumed that they camouflaged the animal, since dragonflies are unable to fold their wings.


Meganeura monyi was a prehistoric insect of the Carboniferous period (300 million years ago), resembling and related to the present-day dragonfly. With a wingspan of more than 75 cm (2.5 feet) wide, it was the largest known flying insect species to ever appear on Earth. (The Permian Meganeuropsis permiana is another contender). It was predatory, feeding on other insects and even small amphibians.


Megatypus is an extinct genus of insect. It looked like a dragonfly and was related to these creatures, but was much larger


The Diaphanopterodea or Paramegasecoptera are an extinct order of moderate to large-sized Palaeozoic insects. They are first known from the Middle Carboniferous (late Serpukhovian or early Bashkirian in age), and include some of the earliest known flying insects. Despite their very early appearance in the insect fossil record, they represent a specialised group of Palaeodictyopteroidea (Palaeozoic beaked insects), unique among representatives of that group in having evolved the ability to fold their wings over their thorax and abdomen in a manner similar to, but not homologous with, the Neopteran insects.