Subdivisions of the Miocene
Patagonian Steppe landscape
Japan during the Early Miocene
A satellite image of the Patagonian Desert by NASA World Wind
The Mediterranean during the Late Miocene
Astronaut photography of the Patagonian Desert (most of the view) contrasted with the Limay River, seen flowing eastward from the Andes.
The dragon blood tree is considered a remnant of the Mio-Pliocene Laurasian subtropical forests that are now almost extinct in North Africa.
Barren Patagonian Desert at the Bosques Petrificados National Park
Cameloid footprint (Lamaichnum alfi Sarjeant and Reynolds, 1999; convex hyporelief) from the Barstow Formation (Miocene) of Rainbow Basin, California.
Like Rada Tilly, on the Atlantic Ocean, most of the larger settlements in the steppe are located along the coast.
Fossils from the Calvert Formation, Zone 10, Calvert Co., MD (Miocene)
A Miocene crab (Tumidocarcinus giganteus) from the collection of the Children's Museum of Indianapolis

The Patagonian Desert has existed since the Middle Miocene (14–12 million years ago) and came into existence as the Andes rose to the west.

- Patagonian Desert

As the southern Andes rose in the Middle Miocene (14–12 million years ago) the resulting rain shadow originated the Patagonian Desert to the east.

- Miocene
Subdivisions of the Miocene

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Patagonia

Patagonia refers to a geographical region that encompasses the southern end of South America, governed by Argentina and Chile.

Patagonia refers to a geographical region that encompasses the southern end of South America, governed by Argentina and Chile.

Río Negro Province, Argentina.
Ainsworth Bay and Marinelli Glacier, Chile.
View of Punta Arenas, Chile, in winter
Santa Cruz Province
Black-browed albatross, near Ushuaia
Map of the indigenous peoples of Southern Patagonia
Cueva de las Manos site in Santa Cruz, Argentina
Nao Victoria, the replica of the first ship to pass through the Strait of Magellan
An 1840s illustration of indigenous Patagonians from near the Straits of Magellan, from Voyage au pole sud et dans l'Océanie by French explorer Jules Dumont d'Urville
Tehuelche warriors in Patagonia
Map of the advance of the Argentine frontier until the establishment of zanja de Alsina
Under General Roca, the Conquest of the Desert extended Argentine power into Patagonia
Tierra del Fuego sheep ranch, 1942: The region's primary activity then, it has been eclipsed by the decline in the global wool market as much as by petroleum and gas extraction.
Gauchos mustering sheep in Patagonia
Whale watching off the Valdes Peninsula
La Trochita on its Chubut Province route: Formerly the sole rapid transport means in the province, La Trochita is now a tourist attraction.

The region comprises the southern section of the Andes Mountains with lakes, fjords, temperate rainforests, and glaciers in the west and deserts, tablelands and steppes to the east.

During the Oligocene and early Miocene, large swathes of Patagonia were subject to a marine transgression, which might have temporarily linked the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, as inferred from the findings of marine invertebrate fossils of both Atlantic and Pacific affinity in La Cascada Formation.