Fossil of the year

Fossil of the year 2024

A trace of life was chosen as Fossil of the Year for the first time in 2024:

Tambia spiralis

The trace fossil is characterised by an unusual, clear and yet variable shape and is very specific in its stratigraphic and geographical distribution. It was found in the sandstone quarries of the Bromacker between Georgenthal and Tambach-Dietharz and is very common there. However, it is now also known from other continental deposits of similar age in other regions.

Since its first description in 1956 by the palaeontologist Arno Hermann Müller, Tambia spiralis has been interpreted in many different ways without a generally accepted interpretation being published. In the 1970s, Thomas Martens presented the most comprehensive treatment of the fossil to date and described Tambia spiralis as a grazing track. An animal from the arthropod group is considered the most likely producer, but small tetrapods are also being discussed.

Find out more about the trace fossil Tambia spiralis here. (in German only)

Text source: Information leaflet Fossil of the Year 2024 - Tambia spiralis

Read here which fossils have received this title since 2008.