What is an effect of continental drift on biological species

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Speciation And Continental Drift

what is an effect of continental drift on biological species

How are continental drift and speciation related? Subject: Biology migrated too with the continent, b) As a consequence, over millions of years, new species. d) The most prominent example of the role of continental drift.

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Forget meteorites. Bin volcanic eruptions. When it comes to mass extinction continental drift is the mega-killer, claims Australian palaeontologist Dr Malte Ebach. Dr Ebach will explain area cladistics, its applications and some surprising results at a media conference at 12 noon at the Melbourne Museum. As an example, Dr Ebach points to his study of million year old trilobites, small marine invertebrates which lived about to million years ago.

Implicating Continental Drift in Speciation: The displacement and rearrangement of land masses over geologic time has helped to create biological diversity on our planet. Without the profound effects created by geological reconfiguration life on earth might have been very different from the way that it is now. Continental drift is the movement of land masses due to the effects of plate tectonics. This supercontinent supposedly began to separate late in the Triassic Period to million years ago into a southern landmass, Gondwanaland, and the northern landmass Laurasia. These continents began to break up and head towards their present day locations only some million years ago. Because these two land masses were the only two continents on the face of the earth for about million years they are perhaps two of the most important geological structures of the last billion years.

Continental drift and plate tectonics—the notion that large chunks of Earth's crust slowly but inexorably shift positions—was proposed in but not accepted until the s. These movements changed the face of the planet—pieces of the continents congealed into the "supercontinent" Pangaea about million years ago and then separated about million ago. Scientists began to speculate about how these alterations would affect the formation and extinction of species and thus, what we call biodiversity. In , James Valentine and Eldridge Moores of the University of California suggested that broken-up continents would create more ecological niches and promote favorable climate and environmental conditions that are conducive to biodiversity. In the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences this week May 15, , two University of Wisconsin—Madison geoscientists have plumbed some of the broadest databases in geology and paleontology to show that their predecessors were on the right track: Marine species tend to become more numerous when the continents divide, and to stabilize—maybe even decline—when continents congeal. Their report focused on fossilized marine species in sedimentary rock, which are more numerous and easier to study than species that lived on land. Shanan Peters, a professor of geoscience, Andrew Zaffos, a postdoctoral researcher, and collaborator Seth Finnegan at the University of California, Berkeley, correlated the degree of continental fragmentation through time, starting million years ago, with the diversity of multicellular life, which expanded during the "Cambrian explosion.

We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. Continental drift has helped create the diversity we see present in modern day plants and animals. Through a process of speciation, the movement of the continents has had a generous role throughout evolution, effecting and distributing flora and fauna. The Process of Speciation Although speciation could be seen as both a natural and a manmade phenomenon, in the case of continental drift it is a naturally occurring one. The process of speciation takes place when a group of animals of the same species find themselves isolated from one another. There are many cases in which speciation can occur outside of continental drift, some examples are mountain ranges and large bodies of water. Continental drift mainly effects plant species and animal species that live in a wide range; the drifting of the continents broke up and separated species in such a way it was no longer possible for them to come in contact with one another.

The effects of continental drift. Continental Drift has affected the world in so many different kinds of ways. Its hard to imagine. Continental Drift has affected the evolution of animals, the worlds geographical positions and the world's climates. There are also many horrendous effects of continental drifts, like Earthquakes and Tsunamis. Originally all of the world's surface land was located in one region on the globe, Pangea.

Continental Drift: Theory & Definition

Continental Drift: Wegener's Theory - Chemistry for All - FuseSchool

As continents continue moving, study suggests effects on biodiversity

Continental drift was a theory that explained how continents shift position on Earth's surface. Set forth in by Alfred Wegener, a geophysicist and meteorologist, continental drift also explained why look-alike animal and plant fossils, and similar rock formations, are found on different continents. Wegener thought all the continents were once joined together in an "Urkontinent" before breaking up and drifting to their current positions. But geologists soundly denounced Wegener's theory of continental drift after he published the details in a book called " The Origin of Continents and Oceans. Though most of Wegener's observations about fossils and rocks were correct, he was outlandishly wrong on a couple of key points. For instance, Wegener thought the continents might have plowed through the ocean crust like icebreakers smashing through ice. Although Wegener's "continental drift" theory was discarded, it did introduce the idea of moving continents to geoscience.

Impact of Continental Drift on Evolution Essay





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