Have you ever wondered what left behind those prints and tracks on the seashore, or what made those marks or dug those holes in the dunes? Life Traces of the Georgia Coast is an up-close look at these traces of life and the animals and plants that made them. It tells about the how the tracemakers lived and how they interacted with their environments. This is a book about ichnology (the study of such traces), a wonderful way to learn about the behavior of organisms, living and long extinct.
Life Traces of the Georgia Coast presents an overview of the traces left by modern animals and plants in this biologically rich region; shows how life traces relate to the environments, natural history, and behaviors of their tracemakers; and applies that knowledge toward a better understanding of the fossilized traces that ancient life left in the geologic record. Augmented by numerous illustrations of traces made by both ancient and modern organisms, the book shows how ancient trace fossils directly relate to modern traces and tracemakers, among them, insects, grasses, crabs, shorebirds, alligators, and sea turtles. The result is an aesthetically appealing and scientifically accurate book that will serve as both a source book for scientists and for anyone interested in the natural history of the Georgia coast.
"For a teacher who takes students to beaches or barrier islands, this is an excellent comprehensive guide that reveals the surface and depths of traces found in maritime forests, dunes, beaches and tidal flats. Martin's book is not just a low country boil, it is a feast salted with humor and insights."
– This View of Life
"This book provides a hefty summary of [Martin's] research; it is scientifically rigorous but still tells a good story, and is often quite humorous. Detailed descriptions of plant, invertebrate, and vertebrate traces are accompanied by many photos and diagrams [...] Highly recommended."
Preface and Acknowledgments
1. Introduction to Ichnology of the Georgia Coast
2. History of the Georgia Coast and Its Ichnology
3. Tracemaker Habitats and Substrates
4. Marginal-Marine and Terrestrial Plants
5. Terrestrial Invertebrates
6. Marginal-Marine Invertebrates
7. Terrestrial Vertebrates, Part I: Fish, Amphibians, Reptiles
8. Terrestrial Vertebrates, Part II: Birds and Mammals
9. Marginal-Marine and Marine Vertebrates
10. Trace Fossils and the Georgia Coast
11. Future Studies, Future Traces
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Anthony J. Martin is Professor of Practice at Emory University, where he teaches courses in paleontology, geology, and the environmental sciences.