Which History Does Fossils Represent?

A recent statistical analysis was published in Science which suggests the fossil record does in fact reflect a realistic version of the history concerning life on earth. Biodiversity has been a curiosity with Paleontologists who are concerned with bias conclusions and wonder if the fossil holds a true representation.

The publication discussed what Darwin had mentioned about the lack of transitions discovered in the fossil record and hoped someday it will all be cleared up (which is a common threat among many evolutionary theories).  As they put their  concern this way, “less than one percent of extinct species are represented in the fossil record.” Less than one percent? That is impossible unless one assumes there were supposed to be missing transitions in-between as required in evolutionary ‘theory.’

The study compared various creatures and other parameters such as marine sedimentary rock formation, sea level, and isotopes of carbon, oxygen, sulfur, and strontium in order to see how they are related. Researchers discovered a way in which sedimentary rock is laid down where it does correlate with species diversity because both are related to “other geological forces.”

Peters writes, “Raup was right, in that there is a strong correlation between the variable rock record and fossil diversity, but he was wrong about the meaning of that correlation. It exists because the biosphere actually responds to the environmental changes that are responsible for producing variability in the marine sedimentary rock record.”

It is quite clear, the fossil record does not show transitional species with evolution of various kinds morphing into new creatures from common ancestral predecessors. The researchers are simply assuming the biodiversity found in the fossil record demonstrates it which is circular reasoning.

While the uniformitarian presuppositions are a faulty framework,  Peters does confirm something of value in what creationism had predicted… He says, “The biosphere actually responds to the environmental changes that are responsible for producing variability in the marine sedimentary rock record.”

Indeed it did 4,300 years ago! In creationism, we believe catastrophic changes in the environment was responsible for in having an effect on the biodiversity of creatures discovered in the fossil record but not the evolution of those life-forms, only the order in which they were buried!

How The Cambrian Explosion Has Been Amazing

Darwin considered the Cambrian fossils to be a problem for evolution because of their sudden appearance of complexity rather than slow and gradual.  One of which that could disprove evolution entirely. But it was widely believed that eventually answers would come with future science which is a common theme in various explanations of evolution. Well, with future science many more Cambrian fossils have been discovered!

And has it answered questions that plagued Darwin? No! There are attempted explanations of the data (like hyper-evolution) but the pattern of sudden appearance of complex remains.  Animals that have complex digestive systems, eyes, and nervous systems. Precambrian fossils were thought to be the answer to the problem, but the ones discovered there so far have no relationships with animals.

In the Deadwood Formation where it was thought to have formed very slowly, a group of scientists from different countries had discovered exquisitely-preserved crustaceans which they said had a ” surprisingly modern aspect” in the mudstone!

PNAS described it this way…

“The early history of crustaceans is obscured by strong biases in fossil preservation, but a previously overlooked taphonomic mode yields important complementary insights. Here we describe diverse crustacean appendages of Middle and Late Cambrian age from shallow marine mudstones of the Deadwood Formation in western Canada. The fossils occur as flattened and fragmentary carbonaceous cuticles but provide a suite of phylogenetic and ecological data by virtue of their detailed preservation. In addition to an unprecedented range of complex, largely articulated filtering limbs, we identify at least four distinct types of mandible.”

“Together, these fossils provide the earliest evidence for crown-group branchiopods and total-group copepods and ostracods, extending the respective ranges of these clades back from the Devonian, Pennsylvanian, and Ordovician. Detailed similarities with living forms demonstrate the early origins and subsequent conservation of various complex food-handling adaptations, including a directional mandibular asymmetry that has persisted through half a billion years of evolution.”

“At the same time, the Deadwood fossils indicate profound secular changes in crustacean ecology in terms of body size and environmental distribution. The earliest radiation of crustaceans is largely cryptic in the fossil record, but “small carbonaceous fossils” reveal organisms of surprisingly modern aspect operating in an unfamiliar biosphere.”

There were other crustaceans that had been discovered in the Cambrian. Since the fossil record disagrees with the evolutionary timeline of slow and gradual, these scientists pushed back the timeline for example, branchiopods were pushed back 80-100 million years. With the problem of complexity so early in the fossil record, these scientist tried their best to explain differences between modern ones but nevertheless, “direct evidence for sophisticated particle-handling” and represent “the acme of Cambrian differentiation within appendages…” 

In order to reconcile fossil copepods which are larger than modern ones. They suggested that there was a presence of fish with predatory eyes which drove the crustacean size down.  But perhaps they overlooked something, fish fossils were discovered by the Chinese back in 2002-03,  in the early Cambrian!

There biggest problem with these amazing fossils of animals is the fact that with all those complex body parts represented in an early part of the fossil record is how a gradual, unguided evolutionary process would lead to such complex levels of function in such a short period of time, abruptly, with no fossil pathway on how it got there, much earlier than expected.

In a more recent discovery, a new species of filter-feeding marine animal that resembles a tulip was discovered on Mt. Stephen in British Columbia.

Phys.org describes this way…

“Officially named Siphusauctum gregarium, fossils reveal a tulip-shaped creature that is about the length of a dinner knife (approximately 20 centimetres or eight inches) and has a unique filter feeding system.”

“Siphusauctum has a long stem, with a calyx – a bulbous cup-like structure – near the top which encloses an unusual filter feeding system and a gut. The animal is thought to have fed by filtering particles from water actively pumped into its calyx through small holes. The stem ends with a small disc which anchored the animal to the seafloor. Siphusauctum lived in large clusters, as indicated by slabs containing over 65 individual specimens.”

This amazing fully-formed animal, which includes a gut, foot anchor and pump to drive water through its complex and “unusual filter-feeding system” implies a very short time period between the Precambrian and its abrupt appearance.

This is why the Cambrian explosion has been and will continue to be quite amazing. Its data confirms creationism, while evolution the data continues to make predictions and expectations on what the explanation of evolution  is supposed to do rather than the other way around which generally is common with “theories” in science.

How Evolutionary Thinking Attempts To Counter Its Critics

Over 200 million fossils have been collected but yet there remains large systematic gaps in the record. Darwin skeptics have pointed out there should be more transitional creatures than fully evolved species because it takes so many changes to get to the next animal. The record has shown, there are not many alleged transitional creatures and the ones that have been labeled as such are highly questionable which falsifies the notion of a gradually unfolding tree of life.

Generally we find two ways an evolutionist will answer this, one is based on faith: over the years they haven’t discovered those transitional fossils yet but believe they will with time. The second answer is one which has been alluded to many times in this blog and is also explained in a recent science daily article from an evolutionist point of view which says…

“During the end-Permian extinction, some 250 million years ago, entire groups of animals and plants either vanished altogether or decreased significantly in numbers, and the recovery of the survivors was at times slow and prolonged before new radiations took place.”

“By studying the fossil record, palaeontologists can examine how individual groups of organisms responded to the end-Permian event and assess just how dramatic it was. However, as the quality and completeness of the fossil record varies considerably, both geographically and stratigraphically, palaeontologists need to find a way to ‘join the dots’ and piece together the fragments of a complex mosaic to give a more satisfactory and better picture of ancient life’s diversity.”

How can planeontologists ‘join the dots’ in order to give a satisfactory or better picture of the tree of life? The answer lies with Dr Marcello Ruta who said: “Evolutionary relationships can be superimposed on a time scale, allowing you to infer missing portions of past diversity.  They are powerful tools that complement and refine the known record of extinct diversity.  If you visualize evolutionary relationships in the form of branching diagrams and then plot them on a time scale, new patterns begin to emerge, with gaps in the fossil record suddenly filling rapidly.

Wow and there you have it! Sounds familiar? An author uses his imagination to create a story such as science fiction where a person imagines what an alien being would look like, say and do. They come up with impossible transportation which can fly millions of light years in a matter of seconds or minutes. This fills in the gap on not actually discovering alien life forms and their supposed spaceships. Is imagination used for such things as science fiction movies really a powerful tool for filling in the fossil record? This in no way replaces empirical science, even knowing part of the track record on various guesses made by scientists concerning unobservable data, it’s generally way off from reality.

The bottom line is this, evolutionary thinking is an illusion based on rebelling against the concept of an intelligent Creator namely God. It’s also an illusion to claim that no amount of data ever falsifies Darwinism, because they have the answers using their imagination which they believe will eventually come true through new research. And if it doesn’t they use more imagination for the next illusion of reality which turns out to be circular reasoning. How often times have you heard, this is science using a storyline or writing a script for it?  So what makes you think this is really science?

Soft Tissue Creates Wrinkle In Evolution

This is quite a fossil discovery, this amazing find contained original soft tissue in a mosasaur fossil. Mosasaurs are marine reptiles that lived when dinosaurs were fairly common. Evolutionists using their old age famework, dating the fossil at 70 million years old…

In PLoS

“The fossil record is capable of exceptional preservation and occasionally labile and decay-prone tissues, such as skin and melanosomes (color-bearing organelles), are preserved as phosphatized remains or organic residues with a high degree of morphological fidelity [1], [2]. Yet, whether multimillion-year-old fossils harbor original organic components remains controversial [3], [4], and, if they do, a positive identification of these biomolecules is required.”

Recent attempts to detect type I collagen (the main structural protein in skeletal tissues) in fossil bones have relied largely on liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS/MS) [5], [6], which provides identification of the peptide sequences but has the drawback of being based on whole bone extracts rather than location-specific tissues (the localization of the collagenous peptides has instead been inferred largely from epitope data [6]). Questions have also been raised concerning the authenticy of the amino acid sequences obtained from this form of analysis [3], and whether or not it is possible to distinguish between a few peptides derived from animal collagens and collagen-like proteins from, e.g., bacteria.”

Why must evolutionary scientists fit these bones in a vast period of time? It defies logic! Let’s look at its environment. Marine fossils happen to be buried in marine sediments – wet, and full of what? Microbes! Is it plausible that there was no decay for 70 million years? It makes no sense! Bioturbation would have occurred, along with degradation by microbes, long before the strata was uplifted into dry chalk inland in Belgium!

Where is this evidence really pointing to? Well think about this, these bones are only a few thousand years old, buried rapidly under a load of sediment.  Wouldn’t this explanation fit the data perfectly?  Even though the original organic components remains controversial as did T-Rex when it was discovered with soft tissue back in 2005, the wrinkle becomes illogical, a whim of great faith in the story of evolution! But its quite an amazing discovery which fits perfectly in creationism!