Also known as Asteriacites (just call them starfish traces), these impressions were left by marine invertebrate animals on the sandy floor of a sea that covered northern Arkansas during the late Mississippian period: about 320 million years ago. These trace fossils were collected from the Batesville Formation, a mostly sandstone unit that outcrops in a thin east-west oriented belt across the Ozark Plateaus. The sample above was found near the town of Leslie, Arkansas in Searcy County. I can’t reveal the exact location, as that’s the only place I know of starfish resting traces in Arkansas. These largely predatory animals, which move using a number of small arms on their points and have a mouth at the center of their bodies, are rarely preserved in the rock record.