© 2017


Insect Traces in Soils and Paleosols

  • Comprehensive volume that maximizes reader insights on insect trace fossils in paleosols

  • Will appeal to researchers and graduate students in ichnology, sedimentology, paleopedology, and entomology

  • Enriches understanding of the behavior of extinct insects and assists readers in interpreting several of the biogenic structures found in paleosols

  • Includes supplementary material:


Part of the Topics in Geobiology book series (TGBI, volume 37)

Table of contents

  1. Jorge Fernando Genise
    Pages 537-558
  2. Jorge Fernando Genise
    Pages 559-577
  3. Back Matter
    Pages 607-695

About this book


This book is devoted to the ichnology of insects, and associated trace fossils, in soils and paleosols. The traces described here, mostly nests and pupation chambers, include one of the most complex architectures produced by animals. Chapters explore the walls, shapes and fillings of trace fossils followed by their classifications and ichnotaxonomy. Detailed descriptions and interpretations for different groups of insects like bees, ants, termites, dung beetles and wasps are also provided. 

Chapters also highlight the the paleoenvironmental significance of insect trace fossils in paleosols for paleontological reconstructions, sedimentological interpretation, and ichnofabrics analysis. Readers will discover how insect trace fossils act as physical evidence for reconstructing the evolution of behavior, phylogenies, past geographical distributions, and to know how insects achieved some of the more complex architectures. The book will appeal to researchers and graduate students in ichnology, sedimentology, paleopedology, and entomology and readers interested in insect architecture.


Evolution Ichnology Insects Paleoenvironmental Paleosols Trace fossils Entomology

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.National Ichnological Collection and Division Icnología of the Museo Argentino de Ciencias NaturalesPresident of the First International Congress on Ichnology (Ichnia 2004)Buenos AiresArgentina

About the authors

Jorge F. Genise is a Principal Researcher for the National Research Council of Argentina and founder of the National Ichnological Collection and Division Icnología of the Museo Argentino de Ciencias Naturales, where with his team he works on insect traces, extant and fossil, particularly in soils and paleosols, a field in which he is a recognized international expert. He is member of the editorial board of Ichnos (The International Journal of Animal and Plant Traces), invited lecturer in international ichnological and paleoentomological congresses, and president of the First International Congress on Ichnology. He has published several book chapters, more than 130 scientific articles and directed several doctoral theses on insect ichnology.

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Ichnoentomology
  • Book Subtitle Insect Traces in Soils and Paleosols
  • Authors Jorge Fernando Genise
  • Series Title Topics in Geobiology
  • Series Abbreviated Title Topics in Geobiology
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Earth and Environmental Science Earth and Environmental Science (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-319-28208-4
  • Softcover ISBN 978-3-319-80298-5
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-319-28210-7
  • Series ISSN 0275-0120
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XXVIII, 695
  • Number of Illustrations 108 b/w illustrations, 289 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Geoecology/Natural Processes
    Evolutionary Biology


"In 695 pages the Argentine author Jorge Fernando Genise comprehensively describes the basics of ichnoentomology in order to encourage further research. For this very young scientific field, the book is an important milestone in advancing the study of insect traces and insect trace fossils. Insects and their traces in palaeosols have been observed and described by South Americans for about 200 years. Genise therefore had a good starting point. But what he made out of it over the years in his own research is truly remarkable. Luckily for all of us, he has written his knowledge down and published it in the present book." (Lothar H. Vallon, Paläozoologie)“For any relatively new discipline, there necessarily comes a time for the consolidation and reappraisal of the state of our knowledge; for continental trace fossils, and especially those of insects, this is that time, and Genise’s remarkable book, Ichnoentomology: Insect Traces in Soil and Paleosols, is the vehicle. Generously illustrated, the numerous superb photographs and schematic diagrams of fossil and modern insect traces set this book apart and effectively portray a wealth of newly illustrated forms that will help to establish Genise’s Ichnoentomology as an indispensable, nonpareil resource on continental traces and trace fossils for student and professional ichnologists, entomologists, general geologists and paleontologists, pedologists and paleopedologists, and fluvial sedimentologists for decades to come.” (Thomas M. Bown, Colorado State University)

“This book represents one of the few efforts in establishing a framework for ichnoentomology and I view it as an excellent contribution to what is a growing field of inquiry. The main chapters cover a range of topics. Introductory materials include: burrow walls and linings; shape, fillings and other morphological characters; and taxonomy (which the author refers to as “the utopia of classifying the unclassifiable”). These materials are ably executed and nicely illustrated with a mixture of hand-drawn sketches, photographic plates and schematics drawn using software.This is a rare and comprehensive integration of ichnology and entomology. I really enjoyed perusing the tome and I have to say I am learning much from it. If one were a field-based entomologist or an ichnologist, I would consider this book to be a critical addition to your shelf.” (Murray K. Gingras, University of Alberta)

“This remarkable book by Jorge Genise is the result of a persistent and coordinated convergence of research efforts during a long and prolific work on continental trace fossils, accomplished by the author and his group of students for more than 25 years. I strongly recommend the book, which will constitute an invaluable resource for ichnologists, paleobiologists, sedimentologists, and stratigraphers interested in paleosols and continental paleoenvironments, ichnofabric and ichnofacies analysis, insect trace fossils, and the evolutionary history of insect behavior.” (Eduardo B. Olivero, Centro Austral de Investigaciones Científicas, Ushuaia, Argentina)

“With his book Ichnoentomology, Genise clearly has laid the foundation for a cathedral of coming ichnoentomologists. The reviewer is hoping that his one and only expectation from the publication of his book will come true, not only exceptionally, but very often, namely that some students find a copy of Ichnoentomology on a library shelf and will decide to “pick up the gauntlet.” It certainly is worth it!“ (Lothar H. Vallon, Paläozoologie)