The surface of a globe cannot be mapped onto a flat surface without distortion, particularly at the edges.  When you look at these maps try to imagine the right and left edges curving around to meet, and in your mind reduce the size of land masses at the top and bottom of the map.  All the maps here are drawn so that the center of the map is located at 0 degrees longitude (Greenwich Meridian).  So when the continents creep over and join at the opposite location on the globe (the middle of today's Pacific Ocean), they appear at the right and left edges of the map.  (This is particularly true for Precambrian time.)

These maps show the main tectonic plates, but not the minor ones.

To see a particular ecosystem (buttons on the right), move the cursor over the button.  To turn off a particular ecosystem, click the button.  This allows you to see more than one ecosystem at once.

The fossil buttons at the bottom of the maps must be clicked to turn on, and turning on one will extinguish the others.  Each dot shows where the fossil was found.  Moving the cursor over the location of a fossil will show its genus (and species where available). Clicking on the location of a fossil will bring up images and a description of the animal. Note that to save space we include prokaryotes and multicellular eukaryotes under the heading "invertebrates." To return to the map page with the ecosystems and animal types you chose, use the back button on your browser (this is browser-dependent, however). If you click on the map button instead, you will return to the map with all your choices erased.


Note: the location of the continents and ecosystems are correct for the EARLY period (the date shown under the map), but the fossils are shown for the entire period.
About the Maps
About the Maps