Black and white lari seabirds flock along the tidemark on the silvery sand, pecking at the seaweed and the dead sea animals washed up and left by the ocean. Other more adventurous birds strut about in the dry sand near the fringe of curving palm trees at the head of the beach. They are being watched from the ridge of red granite that sweeps down from the hilly interior of the island and protrudes as a headland at one end of the beach. Suddenly, from the rounded rocks, a sleek green and orange shape darts out onto the dazzling sand and, in a burst and flurry of feathers, one of the more foolhardy birds is caught and killed. The hunter is a tiny megalosaur, similar to that found on the great island of Madagascar 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) to the south. It is only about 3 meters (10 feet) long. It picks up its prey and carries it back to eat in peace in the darkness beneath the palms. As Gondwana ripped itself apart and the landmasses that were to become the Africa and the Indian Subcontinent drifted away from one another, many fragments of continental material were left scattered across the Indian Ocean in between. One particular fragment (Madagascar) is crescent-shaped, about 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) long and is almost totally submerged, but its granite mountain peaks protrude as the scatter of the Seychelle islands about 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) to the northeast of Madagascar. Here again the animals are remnants of the old Gondwana fauna, but they are somewhat different, having evolved to cope with new conditions. On a small island there is not quite so much to eat, and the food is found in a much more limited area. Dwarf forms of animals evolve as the only types that are able to survive the more stringent conditions.