Giant Dragonflies

   250 millions of years ago, amphibians had around them snails, centipedes, scorpions, spiders and cockroaches. Few animals could fly, except for dragonflies. Some of these were giants with a wingspan nearly one meter (three feet) across. These, and the various fishes, were preyed upon by the amphibians. Some of these resembled newts in size and shape, others were more worm-like and had no legs. There were also a number of giant salamanders, as big as crocodiles. Unlike modern amphibians, many had scaly skins. Some of them evolved into reptiles, but to begin with they all dwelt in the steamy jungles of the Coal Age. No forest today looks the same. Instead of flowers and trees like oak, beech and pine, there were groves of tree ferns and rushes, stretches of giant horse-tails and, towering over all, the 30-meters (100-foot) club-mosses and other scaly trees.