Dictionary of Geotourism

2020 Edition
| Editors: Anze Chen, Young Ng, Erkuang Zhang, Mingzhong Tian

Fossil and Non-Fossil

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-13-2538-0_747

The differences between fossils and non-fossils hinge on their association with palaeobionts. Fossils should have biological characteristics, such as form, structure, patterns and organic composition and have preserved traces of the living palaeobionts. Certain types of matter are preserved in rocks but are unrelated to living organisms, or their associated activities cannot be called fossils even though they look like some types of fossils; and these are called non-fossils. Typical examples of non-fossils are Jiang Jie Shi (Ginger stone, loess child), turtle stones and dendritic iron deposits.

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