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Fossils are essentially the remains of numerous creatures that lived thousands or numerous years earlier. When these animals died, they were buried in layers as well as layers of planet. While their flesh would certainly rot away, the more difficult components of their body, such as coverings, bones, etc, would stay undamaged between the layers of sediment. Currently, all those years later, those bones and coverings can still be located, intact, as those layers of sediment are again unearthed.