How did Laurasia and Gondwana (Gondwanaland) change during the Cretaceous period?
During the Cretaceous period, both Laurasia and Gondwana fragmented into smaller landmasses and separated from each other. The whole motif of the Cretaceous was change—change from the ancient topography to the more familiar forms we see today.
angiosperms (flowering plants), in harmony with the development of new groups of insects that provided fresh sources of food for the dinosaurs. All these new food sources allowed the dinosaurs to continue to dominate throughout the Cretaceous period.
In the Early Cretaceous period, Laurasia began to break up due to the action of an extension of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, with North America and Greenland separating from Eurasia. Rifting occurred in Gondwana, with South America and Africa beginning to separate. In the middle of the Cretaceous period, Gondwana had separated into four major landmasses: South America, Africa, the combined India and Madagascar, and the combined Antarctica and Australia.
By the Late Cretaceous, North America and Greenland began to split, as did Australia and Antarctica, and India and Madagascar. The Atlantic Ocean continued to widen, and India and Australia moved northward. By the end of the Cretaceous, the continents began to assume their modern outlines and headed toward their current destinations on the planet’s surface. This also led to the development and widening of our modern oceans and seas.