McAbee Fossil Site
Paleontologist S. Bruce Archibald at the McAbee Fossil Site in Canada, one of many spots in British Columbia that preserves tiny fossilized insects in stunning detail.
A fossilized fungus gnat from Driftwood Canyon, Canada. The fly is only a few millimeters long.
A fossil insect from British Columbia. Details are preserved finely enough that scientists can figure out which species the specimens belonged to.
A fossil wasp from the collection of the Stonerose Interpretive Center & Eocene Fossil Site in Republic, Wash.
The wings of a wasp from the Stonerose Interpretive Center & Eocene Fossil Site collection are barely visible.
Paleontologist Rolf Mathewes of Simon Fraser University in British Columbia holds up a tiny insect fossil.
Quilchena Fossil Site
Paleontologist Rolf Mathewes with students at the Quilchena fossil site in British Columbia.
Sign up for the Live Science daily newsletter now
Get the world’s most fascinating discoveries delivered straight to your inbox.
Stephanie Pappas is a contributing writer for Live Science, covering topics ranging from geoscience to archaeology to the human brain and behavior. She was previously a senior writer for Live Science but is now a freelancer based in Denver, Colorado, and regularly contributes to Scientific American and The Monitor, the monthly magazine of the American Psychological Association. Stephanie received a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of South Carolina and a graduate certificate in science communication from the University of California, Santa Cruz.