Day 59 – Q 1. With the help of suitable examples, discuss the correlation between continental drift and the distribution of species. (10 Marks) 

  • IASbaba
  • March 31, 2022
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TLP-UPSC Mains Answer Writing
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1. With the help of suitable examples, discuss the correlation between continental drift and the distribution of species. (10 Marks) 

उपयुक्त उदाहरणों की सहायता से महाद्वीपीय बहाव और प्रजातियों के वितरण के बीच संबंध पर चर्चा करें।


Candidates need to write and explain the economic of scale with production of goods point of view. And with suitable example discuss how it affect the location of the industry. 


According to Wegener’s Continental Drift theory, all the continents were one single continental mass (called a Super Continent) – Pangaea and a Mega Ocean surrounded this supercontinent. The mega ocean is known by the name Panthalassa.


Correlation between continental drift and distribution of species:

  • Fossils of plants discovered on different continents helped to wegener push his case that the continents were once locked together before breaking up and drifting away. For example glossopteris.
  • Glossopteris was Fossil from fern. It is a fern that was discovered in Africa, South America, Antarctica, India, and Australia. 
  • There are three families of cycad are widely distributed throughout tropical and temperate continents of the world. Prior to the theory of continental drift, the widely scattered distribution of present-day cycads in Australia, South Africa, Malaysia and the Americas was an enigma.
  • There are more than 100 species of coral trees, mostly found in Mexico, Central and South America, and Africa. It is doubtful that corals existed when Africa and South America were connected. 
  • During continental drift plant species must have evolved or gone extinct because if climate change. 
  • Continent moving towards pole will get least sunlight and less photosynthesis means less temperatures and less vegetation. Whereas continent moving towards the equator will generate high vegetation with high warmer climate. 
  • Continent drift had changed the size and topography of the continent due to which land masses get impacted by ocean circulation patterns and general circulation of atmosphere. 
  • These dynamic structures encouraged the relocation of the focal point of plant species diversity. 


The theory of continental drift can be used to provide a simplified explanation of the global distribution of plant, their evolution and provide a background. There is also more research needed to study other abiotic factors in relation to plant species diversity. 

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