Scene 9. Fossil Evidence
Fossils – with costumes
What happens: After the narrators review the content, Wegener tries to convince a doubter of the fossil evidence. The fossils dance on alive, die, and are spread out as Pangea breaks apart. The doubter calls in the chorus.
Narrator 1: Fossil Evidence
Narrator 2: Some of the best evidence for Pangea came from distributions of plant and animal fossils across the southern continents.
Narrator 1: Fossils found of the fern glossopteris are shown in green.
Narrator 2: They can be found in Australia,Antarctica, India, Africa and South America.
Narrator 1: Animal fossils of the fresh water amphibian mesosaurus are found in both Africa and South America.
Narrator 2: Scientists could not explain how this creature could have crossed the ocean. However, in Pangea, these land masses were connected.
Narrator 1: The same is true for the land-dwelling creatures shown in tan and brown. They roamed freely across the continents in ancient Pangea.
Doubter: Let me guess. You are working on more evidence.
Wegener: Yes, you’re right. Fossil and plant evidence.
Doubter: I still don’t believe you.
Wegener: Let me show you. (PAUSE) At the time of Pangea, these plants and animals spread across the entire supercontinent. Then, they died. Pangea broke up into the continents. (PAUSE) The continents carried the fossils with them. That’s why we see the same plant fossils in Australia, Antarctica, India, Africa and South America. That’s why the animal fossils are spread across the continents too. What do you think?
Doubter: I’ll show you! Hey doubters!
Scene 9. Fossil Evidence
Description: Wegener presents evidence of shape (fit of the continents) to a doubter. Pangea team will assemble slowly. But doubter still is in disbelief.
Music: “Fantasia: The Sorcerer’s Apprentice”
Props/Costumes: Enlarged continents and “Pangea” t-shirts
Spotlights on narrators, Wegener and doubter. Green lights on fossils.
The scientific journey
Fossil evidence is critical for the evidence supporting Pangea. Fossil evidence from the plant glossopteris is found across South America, Africa, India, Antarctica, and Australia. Land animal fossils are found spread across the continents similarly. A fresh water amphibian, that could not swim across an ocean, is found in South America and Africa. One explanation is that the continents were all one land mass, Pangea, approximately 225 million years ago.