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Article: Gondwana to Asia: Plate tectonics, paleogeography and the biological connectivity of the Indian sub-continent from the Middle Jurassic through latest Eocene (166-35 Ma)

TitleGondwana to Asia: Plate tectonics, paleogeography and the biological connectivity of the Indian sub-continent from the Middle Jurassic through latest Eocene (166-35 Ma)
Authors
KeywordsAfrica
Asia
biogeography
Gondwana
India
Madagascar
Tethys
Issue Date2008
PublisherElsevier BV. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.elsevier.com/locate/earscirev
Citation
Earth-Science Reviews, 2008, v. 88 n. 3-4, p. 145-166 How to Cite?
AbstractUsing the most up-to-the-date information available, we present a considerably revised plate tectonic and paleogeographic model for the Indian Ocean bordering continents, from Gondwana's Middle Jurassic break-up through to India's collision with Asia in the middle Cenozoic. The landmass framework is then used to explore the sometimes complex and occasionally counter-intuitive patterns that have been observed in the fossil and extant biological records of India, Madagascar, Africa and eastern Eurasia, as well those of the more distal continents. Although the paleogeographic model confirms the traditional view that India became progressively more isolated from the major landmasses during the Cretaceous and Paleocene, it is likely that at various times minor physiographic features (principally ocean islands) provided causeways and/or stepping-stone trails along which land animals could have migrated to/from the sub-continent. Aside from a likely link (albeit broken by several marine gaps) to Africa for much of this time (it is notable, that the present-day/recent biota of Madagascar indicates that the ancestors of five land-mammal orders, plus bats, crossed the > 400-km-wide Mozambique Channel at different times in the Cenozoic), it is possible that the Kerguelen Plateau connected India and Australia-Antarctica in the mid-Cretaceous (approximately 115-90 Ma). Later, the Seychelles-Mascarene Plateau and nearby elevated sea-floor areas could have allowed faunas to pass between southern India and Madagascar in the Late Cretaceous, from around 85-65 Ma, with an early Cenozoic extension to this path forming as a result of the Reunion hot-spot trace islands growing on the ocean floor to the SSW of India. The modelling also suggests that India's northward passage towards Asia, with eventual collision at 35 Ma, involved the NE corner of the sub-continent making a glancing contact with Sumatra, followed by Burma from ~ 57 Ma (late Paleocene) onwards, a scenario which is compatible with the fossil record indicating that India-Asia faunal exchanges began occurring at about this time. Finally, we contend that a number of biologically-based direct terrestrial migration routes that have been proposed for last 15 m.y. of the Cretaceous (Asia to India; Antarctica to Madagascar and/or India) can probably be dismissed because the marine barriers, likely varying from > 1000 up to 2500 km, were simply too wide. © 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/151246
ISSN
2015 Impact Factor: 6.991
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 3.752
ISI Accession Number ID

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorAli, JRen_HK
dc.contributor.authorAitchison, JCen_HK
dc.date.accessioned2012-06-26T06:19:14Z-
dc.date.available2012-06-26T06:19:14Z-
dc.date.issued2008en_HK
dc.identifier.citationEarth-Science Reviews, 2008, v. 88 n. 3-4, p. 145-166en_HK
dc.identifier.issn0012-8252en_HK
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/151246-
dc.description.abstractUsing the most up-to-the-date information available, we present a considerably revised plate tectonic and paleogeographic model for the Indian Ocean bordering continents, from Gondwana's Middle Jurassic break-up through to India's collision with Asia in the middle Cenozoic. The landmass framework is then used to explore the sometimes complex and occasionally counter-intuitive patterns that have been observed in the fossil and extant biological records of India, Madagascar, Africa and eastern Eurasia, as well those of the more distal continents. Although the paleogeographic model confirms the traditional view that India became progressively more isolated from the major landmasses during the Cretaceous and Paleocene, it is likely that at various times minor physiographic features (principally ocean islands) provided causeways and/or stepping-stone trails along which land animals could have migrated to/from the sub-continent. Aside from a likely link (albeit broken by several marine gaps) to Africa for much of this time (it is notable, that the present-day/recent biota of Madagascar indicates that the ancestors of five land-mammal orders, plus bats, crossed the > 400-km-wide Mozambique Channel at different times in the Cenozoic), it is possible that the Kerguelen Plateau connected India and Australia-Antarctica in the mid-Cretaceous (approximately 115-90 Ma). Later, the Seychelles-Mascarene Plateau and nearby elevated sea-floor areas could have allowed faunas to pass between southern India and Madagascar in the Late Cretaceous, from around 85-65 Ma, with an early Cenozoic extension to this path forming as a result of the Reunion hot-spot trace islands growing on the ocean floor to the SSW of India. The modelling also suggests that India's northward passage towards Asia, with eventual collision at 35 Ma, involved the NE corner of the sub-continent making a glancing contact with Sumatra, followed by Burma from ~ 57 Ma (late Paleocene) onwards, a scenario which is compatible with the fossil record indicating that India-Asia faunal exchanges began occurring at about this time. Finally, we contend that a number of biologically-based direct terrestrial migration routes that have been proposed for last 15 m.y. of the Cretaceous (Asia to India; Antarctica to Madagascar and/or India) can probably be dismissed because the marine barriers, likely varying from > 1000 up to 2500 km, were simply too wide. © 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.en_HK
dc.languageengen_US
dc.publisherElsevier BV. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.elsevier.com/locate/earscireven_HK
dc.relation.ispartofEarth-Science Reviewsen_HK
dc.rightsEarth - Science Reviews. Copyright © Elsevier BV.-
dc.subjectAfricaen_HK
dc.subjectAsiaen_HK
dc.subjectbiogeographyen_HK
dc.subjectGondwanaen_HK
dc.subjectIndiaen_HK
dc.subjectMadagascaren_HK
dc.subjectTethysen_HK
dc.titleGondwana to Asia: Plate tectonics, paleogeography and the biological connectivity of the Indian sub-continent from the Middle Jurassic through latest Eocene (166-35 Ma)en_HK
dc.typeArticleen_HK
dc.identifier.emailAli, JR: jrali@hku.hken_HK
dc.identifier.emailAitchison, JC: jona@hku.hken_HK
dc.identifier.authorityAli, JR=rp00659en_HK
dc.identifier.authorityAitchison, JC=rp00658en_HK
dc.description.naturelink_to_subscribed_fulltexten_US
dc.identifier.doi10.1016/j.earscirev.2008.01.007en_HK
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-43549116563en_HK
dc.identifier.hkuros142467-
dc.identifier.volume88en_HK
dc.identifier.issue3-4en_HK
dc.identifier.spage145en_HK
dc.identifier.epage166en_HK
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000256821300001-
dc.publisher.placeNetherlandsen_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridAli, JR=7102266465en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridAitchison, JC=7102533858en_HK
dc.identifier.citeulike5154376-

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