Centre of origin digression

Ken Kinman kinman2 at YAHOO.COM
Sat Apr 2 09:22:03 CST 2005

      Yes, you are correct about eastern China being a terrane in the middle of the Mesozoic, so this is a very important consideration.  It was probably fully "docked" with the Asian mainland by early Cretaceous.  However, even in the early Jurassic (during which Archaeopterygidae arose??), China was probably already connected to the Asian mainland by a continuous land bridge.  And even if the bridge wasn't yet completely continuous, the gaps were probably small (like Sumatra to the mainland today), and its vertebrate fauna would have been basically Asian.  Its semi-isolation during the Jurassic would have made this area an excellent evolutionary "laboratory".
          Ken Kinman
Robert wrote:
     I'm way out of my depth here, but do I understand that these bird-like fossils come from what's NE China today? And wasn't that area one of the terranes that docked with the Eurasian core fairly late, like mid-Jurassic or early Cretaceous? Suggesting the beasts originated somewhere else and got rafted to "Asia"?
Dr Robert Mesibov

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