What you're looking at is the earliest record of insects doing the nasty. The extraordinary fossil dates back to the Middle Jurassic period of China some 165 million years ago.

These two amorous insects are called froghoppers, or more formally, Anthoscytina perpetua. They're copulating in the belly-to-belly position, showing the male's aedeagus inserting into the female's bursa copulatrix (which are the best terms ever for male and female sexual anatomy). But it's possible, say the scientists, that the pair were mating in a side-by-side position used by modern froghoppers.

That's right — froghoppers are still around today. They're named as such on account of their hopping behavior as they move from plant to plant.


The scientists, a team ledy by Shu Li, conclude: "Our findings, consistent with those of extant froghoppers, indicate froghoppers' genitalic symmetry and mating position have remained static for over 165 million years."

Hey, when it comes to sex, why should evolution fix what ain't broke?

Read the entire study at PLOS: "Forever Love: The Hitherto Earliest Record of Copulating Insects from the Middle Jurassic of China."

Images: Li et al/PLOS.