Mesozoic Earth ] Back | Next >

 Earth orbit
 70 million years ago

Mean atmospheric O2
 150% of modern level

Mean atmospheric CO2
 6x pre-industrial level

Mean temperature
 4C above modern level

Mesozoic Earth - Late Cretaceous India and Madagascar as they may have appeared from Earth orbit 70 millino years ago; Deccan Traps; Earth from space; plate tectonics; lithosphere; seafloor spreading; continental drift; tectonophysics - Natural History Illustration Geologic Time Scale

 Era: Mesozoic
  Period: Cretaceous
   Epoch: Late
    Age: Maastrichtian


Late Cretaceous India

This is how the Indian subcontinent may have appeared 70 million years ago during the Late Cretaceous period. Looking north, immediately to India's west is the island continent of Madagascar and further west is the eastern coast of southern Africa.

In the distant past India and Madagascar formed a single continent, however India was part of a separate tectonic plate that subsequently began to drift northward. This northward motion (covering about 8 inches per year making it among the fastest on the Earth's lithosphere) split India from Madagascar and carried it north across the Tethys Ocean until it collided with Eurasia about 50 to 35 million years ago. This collision between the Indian and Eurasian plates joined India to South Asia and created the Tibetan Plateau and the Himalaya Mountains, a process which is still evolving to this day.




Copyright Walter B. Myers. All rights reserved.

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