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Where the rocks are not strongly folded or tilted it is possible to work out the order in which the layers were formed.
Most fossils are found in sedimentary rocks deposited in layers.
This damage is in the form of tiny marks called fission tracks.
When volcanic rocks and minerals are formed, they do not contain fission tracks.
The level of nitrogen gradually reduces as the bone decays.
Absolute dating is not possible with this method because the rate at which the nitrogen content declines depends on the surrounding temperature, moisture, soil chemicals and bacteria.