Northernmost (Subarctic) and deepest record of Paleodictyon: paleoecological and biological implications

Miguez-Salas, Olmo; Rodríguez-Tovar, Francisco J.; Ekdale, Allan A.; Kaiser, Stefanie; Brandt, Angelika; Gooday, Andrew J. ORCID: 2023 Northernmost (Subarctic) and deepest record of Paleodictyon: paleoecological and biological implications. Scientific Reports, 13 (1).

Before downloading, please read NORA policies.
s41598-023-34050-w.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution 4.0.

Download (1MB) | Preview


Paleodictyon is one of the most iconic and widespread of trace fossils in the geological record. However, modern examples are less well known and restricted to deep-sea settings at relatively low latitudes. Here, we report the distribution of Paleodictyon at six abyssal sites near the Aleutian Trench. This study reveals for the first time the presence of Paleodictyon at Subarctic latitudes (51°–53°N) and at depths over 4500 m, although the traces were not observed at stations deeper than 5000 m suggesting that there is some bathymetric constraint for the trace maker. Two small Paleodictyon morphotypes were recognized (average mesh size of 1.81 cm), one having a central hexagonal pattern, the other being characterized by a non-hexagonal pattern. Within the study area, Paleodictyon shows no apparent correlation with local environmental parameters. Finally, based on a worldwide morphological comparison, we conclude that the new Paleodictyon specimens represent distinct ichnospecies that are associated with the relatively eutrophic conditions in this region. Their smaller size may reflect this more eutrophic setting in which sufficient food can be obtained from a smaller area in order to satisfy the energetic requirements of the tracemakers. If so, then Paleodictyon size may provide some assistance when interpreting paleoenvironmental conditions.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
ISSN: 2045-2322
Date made live: 05 Jun 2023 15:27 +0 (UTC)

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Document Downloads

Downloads for past 30 days

Downloads per month over past year

More statistics for this item...