So what is a trace fossil worth, when you can’t even tell who made it??? Well, trace fossils very often are preserved in rocktypes that usually do not contain any body fossils. They very often are the only sign of life within these sediments. Further, many trace fossils are produced by animals without hard body parts. These animals cannot be fossilised under normal conditions, their traces, however, can! Although we usually cannot match the tracemakers on species-level, we at least can narrow the possible tracemakers down which also may provide quite important information. Where body fossils only can show us that these animals were present during the time when a rock was deposited (Caution not place, because body fossils can be easily transported! Sometimes it is not even true for time, when body fossils have been eroded and redeposited!), trace fossils can show us that their tracemakers were living during that time in that particular space! (Exceptions of redeposited trace fossils exist here as well, although they are very, very, very, very, very rare...)
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