India was not isolated before colliding with Eurasia: Study

India may not have been as isolated as previously thought while gradually drifting away from Africa and Madagascar towards the north before colliding with the Eurasian plate, a new study has found.

India was not isolated before colliding with Eurasia: Study

India may not have been as isolated as previously thought while gradually drifting away from Africa and Madagascar towards the north before colliding with the Eurasian plate, a new study has found.

Scientists assumed for a long time that the subcontinent was largely isolated during its long journey through the ocean and unique species of plants and animals were therefore able to develop on it.

However, paleontologists at the University of Bonn in Germany are now showing using tiny midges encased in amber that there must have been a connection between the apparently cut off India and Europe and Asia around 54 million years ago that enabled the creatures to move around.


India harbours many unique species of flora and fauna that only occur in this form on the subcontinent. The prerequisite for such a unique development of species is that no exchange takes place with other regions.

For a long time, scientists assumed that India was isolated in this way due to continental drift.

The supercontinent Gondwana, which included South America, Africa, Antarctica, Australia, Madagascar and India, broke up over the course of geological history. What is now India also began moving towards the north east around 130 million years ago.


It was common belief among researchers that, before it collided with the Eurasian plate, India was largely isolated for at least 30 million years during its migration.

However, according to new findings, the Indian subcontinent may not have been as isolated on its journey as we have thought.

“Certain midges that occurred in India at this time display great similarity to examples of a similar age from Europe and Asia,” said lead author Frauke Stebner from University of Bonn.

These findings are a strong indicator that an exchange did occur between the supposedly isolated India, Europe and Asia, researchers said.