Their first clue as to where this ruin of Mauritia lay actually came from gravitational surveys. Researchers found that the gravitation pull of the crust around Mauritius was stronger than other regions of the Indian Ocean.
The only explanation was that the crust there was thicker, presumably from when a destroyed continent rained down on the seafloor and got stuck there.
“Our results demonstrate the existence of ancient continental crust beneath Mauritius,” the researchers note in their study.
They go on to say that this finding makes it possible that, “Mauritius and other Mauritian continental fragments, which once formed part of the ancient nucleus of Madagascar and southern India,” could be reconstructed, so to speak, to paint a detailed picture of the geological evolution of the area.
So if you’ve got any missing continents you need finding, best contact a geologist or two. They’re pretty badass detectives.
[H/T: New Scientist]