Which of the following phenomena might have influenced the evolution of organisms?
- Continental drift
- Glacial cycles
Select the correct answer using the codes given below.
[UPSC Civil Services Exam – 2014 Prelims]
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both 1 and 2
(d) Neither 1 nor 2
- The theory of continental drift explains the arrangement of continents and oceans on Earth.
- It suggests that all land masses were once united as a single supercontinent called Pangea, which was surrounded by a large ocean called Panthalassa.
- Over time, Pangea split into two large land masses, Laurasia and Gondwanaland, which eventually fragmented into smaller continents that exist today.
- This process of continental drift is believed to have influenced the distribution of animals across different continents and influenced their evolution.
- The evolution of organisms may have also been affected by glacial cycles.
- Organisms that could not tolerate extreme cold may have become extinct, while others may have adapted to survive.
- Additionally, the rise in sea level due to glacial melting could have impacted the evolution of organisms living in coastal areas.
Therefore, option (c) is the correct answer.