Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology

2014 Edition
| Editors: Claire Smith

Trackways in Archaeological Conservation and Preservation

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-0465-2_513


Ichnology is the branch of paleontology that studies human and animal fossil tracks and trackways, both of which are widespread across the world. That trackway sites are quite common is not surprising: an animal makes many tracks and traces during its life but leaves only one set of remains which, if skeletal, may be preserved in the fossil record. This entry is concerned with the preservation of trackway sites. Through the ICHNOS Project, Lockley and colleagues provide a record of some 63 hominid and human footprint sites, ordered by approximate age (Lockley et al. 2007). All of these are, needless to say, younger by far than the many known dinosaur track sites and the vastly older invertebrate trackway sites from the Paleozoic era. From a preservation point of view, it is not relevant to distinguish between categories of track maker. Hominid and dinosaur track sites in particular fascinate the public and are good exemplars pertaining to preservation and public access to...

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Copyright information

© The J. Paul Getty Trust 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Getty Conservation InstituteLos AngelesUSA