From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The ichnogenus Thalassinoides: burrows produced by crustaceans from the Middle Jurassic, Makhtesh Qatan, southern Israel.

An ichnotaxon (plural ichnotaxa) is defined by the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature as "a taxon based on the fossilized work of an organism", that is, the non-human equivalent of an artifact.


Ichnotaxa are names used to identify and distinguish morphologically distinctive ichnofossils, more commonly known as trace fossils. They are assigned genus and species ranks by ichnologists, much like organisms in Linnaean taxonomy. These are known as ichnogenera and ichnospecies, respectively.

Ichnotaxa include trace fossils such as burrows, borings and etchings, tracks and trackways, coprolites, gastroliths, regurgitaliths, nests, leaf mines, bite and gnaw structures, secretions modified by organismal activity, such as cocoons, pupal cases, spider webs, embedment structures and plant galls.

Ichnotaxa comes from the Greek ίχνος, ichnos meaning track and ταξις, taxis meaning ordering.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Definition of 'ichno' at dictionary.com.

External links[edit]