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Follow the fossils, find the answers

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Credit: Authors: Sankar Chatterjee, Christopher R. Scotese, and Sunil Bajpai and The Geological Society of America

Boulder, Colo., USA: The fossil history of animal life in India is central to our understanding of the tectonic evolution of Gondwana, dispersal of India, its northward journey, and its collision with Asia. This beautifully illustrated volume provides the only detailed overview of the paleobiogeographic, tectonic, and paleoclimatic evolution of the Indian plate from Gondwana to Asia.

Researchers have long debated why endemism is lacking for Late Cretaceous Indian tetrapods and how and when Indian fauna acquired Eurasian heritage. Plate tectonic reconstructions and fossil study have provided insight into these issues.

Author Sankar Chatterjee (Museum of Texas Tech University) and colleagues explain, "The tectonic evolution of the Indian plate represents one of the most dramatic and epic voyages of all drifting continents, ~9000 km in 160 m.y. It is largely the story of the continual morphing of the Indian plate from its Gondwanan home to its final destination to Asia. The extensive reshuffling of the Indian plate was accompanied by multiple temporary filter bridges, resulting in the cosmopolitan nature of tetrapod fauna."

Additionally, Chatterjee notes, "During the 9000 km India traveled from Antarctica to Asia, it experienced a dramatic climate change from ice age to tropics. The collision of India with Asia not only created the spectacular Himalayan Mountain and Tibetan Plateau, it also triggered the monsoon."

This thorough, up-to-date volume is a must-have reference for researchers and students in Indian geology, paleontology, plate tectonics, and collision of continents.

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Individual copies of the volume may be purchased through The Geological Society of America online store, http://rock.geosociety.org/Store/detail.aspx?id=SPE529, or by contacting GSA Sales and Service, [email protected]

Book editors of earth science journals/publications may request a review copy by contacting April Leo, [email protected]

The Restless Indian Plate and Its Epic Voyage from Gondwana to Asia: Its Tectonic, Paleoclimatic, and Paleobiogeographic Evolution by Sankar Chatterjee, Christopher R. Scotese, and Sunil Bajpai

Geological Society of America Special Paper 529
SPE529, 147 p., $55.00; GSA member price $38.00
ISBN 978-0-8137-2529-1

View the table of contents: http://rock.geosociety.org/store/TOC/SPE529.pdf

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