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« "We took a little liberty with this one. Beetles didn’t evolve until the Cretaceous period and insects were at their largest in the Carboniferous – but these eight-footers are larger than anything on the fossil record. The beetles in episode 103 have bad eyesight and thus long antennae, and they’re carnivorous." »
Primeval: New World official description.[1]


Jurassic Beetles were a species of arthropod from the Jurassic period. They were carnivorous, eusocial creatures that used live animals as incubators for their eggs.

Characteristics

Jurassic Beetles were black or grey beetles, and were carnivorous creatures. Workers and drones were approximately the same size as modern day beetles, while queens were around eight feet in length, with extremely hard and armoured carapaces and large wings which allowed them flight. The Beetles had very small, almost invisible eyes, due to which they had poor eyesight and would avoid fire and bright light, and for that fact they had long antennae to compensate for their poor vision.

It is known that drone and worker Jurassic Beetles generally attacked larger prey in massive swarms to overwhelm and devour it alive in seconds. It is also known that a Queen Beetle would breed by capturing a live victim and depositing at least one sac of gelatinous Beetle eggs from its mouth down into the captured host's throat. (Fear of Flying)

Incursions and encounters

Fear of Flying

NW1x3 JurassicBeetleEggs

A sac of Jurassic Beetle eggs. (Fear of Flying)

When the Eastern Airlines Flight 443 cargo plane went through an Anomaly into a desert in the Jurassic, a swarm of thousands of Jurassic Beetle drones attacked and swarmed over the plane and killed Jim (suggesting he was either attacked and devoured by the swarm, or a Beetle queen laid its eggs in his throat). Dylan Weir speculated that the Beetles were attacking because the plane had landed on their nest.

Meanwhile, the queen Jurassic Beetle came through the Anomaly to Spring River Airport in the present. It attacked Mac Rendell and Samantha Sedaris, then escaped from the duo's attempts to capture it, and roamed the airport. The queen Beetle eventually captured a local mechanic among the airport's warehouses and dragging him into a hangar. There, the queen deposited an eggsac down the worker's throat, before Mac and Samantha arrived and tried to restrain the queen by tying ropes around its legs. The Beetle queen tried to escape by flying off, but Mac was able to knock it out and the two then restrained and captured it, and removed the eggsac from the worker's throat.

In the Jurassic, the Beetle drones broke into the plane's cockpit through the windshield, and devoured and killed Pallavi Grewal. Shortly afterwards, Evan and Dylan fled from the plane back to the Anomaly, using blankets set on fire to keep the Beetle swarm at bay. When they then hoisted themselves back up through the Anomaly on a makeshift anchor, the Beetles began following them through by climbing up along this anchor, until the two threw the anchor back through.

Just after, in the present, the Beetle queen broke free, and initially tried to fly off until Samantha shot at it.
NW1x3 JurassicBeetleQueenFlying

A Jurassic Beetle queen flying using its wings and attempting an aerial attack. (Fear of Flying)

The queen then made an aerial attack on Samantha, but lost control of its flight when Sam directly shot it, sending it falling and rolling back through the Anomaly.

Trivia

  • Jurassic Beetle drones bear many similarities to the Future Beetle drones from Episode 5.4 of Primeval; both species are swarming eusocial carnivores which rely on very large numbers to overwhelm and devour human prey within seconds. Also, in both species, the drones are only slightly larger than modern-day beetles while the queens are much bigger.

Errors

  • The size of the Queen Jurassic Beetle would be physically impossible in real life due to the average oxygen levels of Jurassic Earth, and Earth's gravity would crush an arthropod of this size under its own weight. Similarly, it would probably never be able to fly.
  • The creators claimed in the Jurassic Beetle Queen's official description that beetles did not evolve until the Cretaceous, but this is untrue as the first beetles appeared over 200 million years before the Cretaceous.

References

  1. http://www.primevalnewworld.com/about_cast.php

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