What Are Trace Fossils?

The Trace Fossil Collection contains fossilized traces of invertebrate animals and includes specimen from 680 million years ago to the present. University of Alberta scientists use trace fossils to understand ecology and animal behaviours since the dawn of evolution. Trace fossils are preserved signs of activity (for example, feeding, scratching, burrowing, walking, or resting. The trace fossil shown above is the oldest known animal track in the world made by an unknown slug-like animal called Ubilateria.

Photo Credit:


University of Alberta Trace Fossil Collection

Fast Facts:

• Established by current curator Dr. Murray Gingras in 2011.
• Contains the oldest animal track known – the slug-like animal called Ubilateria.