The shalow sea covering North America

During the Devonian period, which lasted roughly between 419.2 million and 358.9 million years ago, a vast shallow sea covered most of North America, teeming with diverse marine life.

Here’s a closer look at this ancient underwater landscape:

  • Extent: This shallow sea stretched across a significant portion of the continent, leaving behind widespread marine deposits especially evident in the midwestern and northeastern regions.
  • Depth: The water was relatively shallow, creating a unique ecosystem.
  • Climate: The Devonian period was characterized by a warm, tropical climate, fostering abundant marine life in these shallow seas.
  • Ecosystem: The warm waters were home to a variety of creatures like:
    • Brachiopods (shellfish)
    • Trilobites (arthropods)
    • Crinoids (sea lilies)
    • Ammonoids (early relatives of nautiluses)
    • Corals (both tabulate and rugose varieties)
    • Early fish, earning the Devonian period the nickname “Age of Fishes” due to their abundance and diversity.

It’s important to note that while the majority of North America was submerged, some small landmasses remained exposed around the continent’s edges.

Overall, the shallow sea covering North America during the Devonian period played a crucial role in shaping the continent’s geological history and fostering the evolution of diverse marine life forms.