Trace fossils

Trace fossils from the Bull Fork Formation in Caesar Creek, Ohio
Trace fossils from the Ordovician Bull Fork Formation in Caesar Creek, Ohio, photographed by Mark A. Wilson

Trace fossils preserve the behavior of organisms in the geologic record. They can be found in strata from all eras and range from worm tunnels and foot prints to remains of organic material produced by an organism, like coprolites (fossilized droppings) and stromatolites (biologically generated sedimental structures). They are especially important for interpreting the behavior of soft bodied organisms not preserved in the fossil record.