From Dinosaurs to Birds


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #1

A very interesting study published in September, 2014 in Current Biology depicts how dinosaurs made the transition to birds is a long series of changes before they were able to fly. This summary was taken from a report in the National Geographic on the web.

The first step was the development of feathers. It has been suggested that many dinosaurs developed feathers, not for flight, but for warmth. They provide excellent insolation.

The next step was to get smaller and the evidence indicates that these fauna get smaller just as other dinosaurs were getting larger. While there is no clear reason for this, I would suggest that this could be based on warmth also. If the warmth problem was solved by feathers, just as mammals used fur, dinosaurs could get smaller. Gigantism of the Mammoths and the Saber Tooth Tiger is tied to cold.

When dinosaurs became small enough to be supported by their wings in the air they were ready to conquer the air.

Why do birds fly? There is an old saying, “Nature abhors a vacuum.” This means that when there is an imbalance in nature, nature3 seeks to restore that balance.

Let us imagine a world where there is no birds. Billions of insects would exist without any predators to keep them in check. Billions of meals would go uneaten. The God of nature found a natural way to populate an important ecological niche by the creation of birds.

The new study supports the views of George G. Simpson published in 1941 that suggested that “evolutionary innovation can lead to rapid diversification among species exploiting new environmental niches.”

Opening the air as a biological niche in a new way through flight undoubtedly saved bird/dinosaurs from the extinction suffered by other dinosaurs 66 million years ago.

This important example amply proves the power of ecology and the environment to shape and guide evolution through Natural Selection.


(Christy Hemphill) #2

On a related note, I got a kick out of the reports of the study where the researchers manipulated genes in chicken embryos so they grew dinosaur faces. http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20150512-bird-grows-face-of-dinosaur

I wonder what the people who say you can’t replicate evolution in a lab say about that. I know it’s not replicating evolution, but it looks a lot like reverse engineering it.


(Dcscccc) #3

hi christy. check the critique of this paper by the id:

http://www.evolutionnews.org/2015/05/scientists_disp096011.html

by the way- to check if its possible to convert a dino into bird, we can think about convenrting a car into an airplane. lets say that we have a self replicating car with dna (like living things). do you think that the car can evolve into an airplane in step wise?


(Christy Hemphill) #4

But…machines don’t have DNA and don’t evolve, so the analogy breaks down before it begins. I don’t really understand the point of the exercise.


(Dcscccc) #5

hi christy.

but what if they will have a DNA and a self replicating system? in this case you will think that those organic machines evolve from other machines? (also, in this case i think that those machines will be evidence for design. think about a watch with dna and self replicating system)

secondly- the claim is about the question if there is a step wise way from one system to another. so even in the case about machines without DNA, do you think its possible to convert something like a car into an airplane (in a functional step wise), even by an intelligent designer like human? and if the answer is not- then how we can think that a natural process can do what intelligent design cant?


(Christy Hemphill) #6

I have no doubt the results of the study are disputed in the scientific community. If you are familiar with academic publishing, that is pretty much how publishing works. You either say something new that people are going to argue with, or you argue with something people already said. The fact that a journal article is met by skepticism is to be expected. Skeptical scientists are free to recreate the study or design their own to contest the findings and get their study published in a peer-reviewed journal. That is how science and academic publishing works.

The Evolution News article misconstrues the quotes of the researchers from the articles they linked in Nature and The Scientists and draws unwarranted conclusions from them. (I read the original articles.) Pointing out that some of the embryos looked like regular chickens is not equal, as the Evolution News article insinuates, to the experimenters making false claims in their published study. When Evolution News said, “the experimenters themselves acknowledged they didn’t produce snouts,” they were referring to quotes that objected to the way the results of study had been simplified in the media, and the scientist was trying to be more precise and clarify what they had accomplished. The linked Nature article shows the photos of the “snouts” and the range of results. Your Evolution News article acted like there was some big cover-up. Not so. It is to be expected that when scientists are dealing with genetics, there will be a range of outcomes.

This article is typical of the kind of ID publishing that lots of people find frustrating. All it does is throw around a bunch of skepticism and untested hypotheticals. Just saying you doubt the results of a study is not the same as invalidating or contesting the study. But if it helps people sleep better at night believing the world is still safe from evolutionary biology, fine.


(Christy Hemphill) #7

But they don’t and won’t, so imagining this fantasy world and imagining what would happen in it does not yield “evidence” of any kind that we can apply to science.


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #8

@dcscccc

Of course one could convert a car into an airplane in a thousand years or so. I think that flying cars do exist, but that is hardly the point.

There appears to be strong evidence that indeed birds did evolve from dinosaurs. I gave you the source of the scientific study which is found in Current Biology last year. You can find it online and purchase if you wish.

There is an article based on the study on the Scientific American website posted this month which caught my attention. Read the article and we can talk if y7ou are really interested.

Yes, stupid matter cannot create through evolution, but inspired nature created and designed by God can. Many people do not believe this, but here science gives us the evidence.


(Dcscccc) #9

hi again christy.

we actually find a self replicating motor like the bacterial flagellum:

so according to the evolution theory- a self replicating motor can evolve by step wise way from another system. so if there is no step wise from a car to an airplane, we can know that there is no step wise way to evolve the flagellum or any other complex system. again- the question isnt about a self replclation. but about a way to get from one system to another.

plus- we know that a self replicating motor need a designer. so we have here evidence for design.


(Dcscccc) #10

hi roger. a flying car cant evolve from a non-flying car. because its need a lots of parts at once to get the car flying (you can try this with your car by adding one part and make it fly). so again- no step wise, a part by part.

so a bird cant evolve from a dino step wise.


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #11

@dcscccc

It seems you are playing a semantic game. Of course there are intermediate steps. So what?

Please stick with the science and explain how dinosaurs became birds, which they did. if you think that it is impossible.


(Christy Hemphill) #12

If you looked at a sperm cell and an egg cell, it would be hard to imagine how you get an adult human being out of it. It doesn’t really seem like the “parts” are there, does it? But that’s the thing. We are talking about life and DNA, not Legos. Oversimplified analogies between life and machines don’t really illuminate anything.


(Dcscccc) #13

i claim that dino cant evolve step wise into a bird. because there is no step wise from a dino to a bird. like there is no step wise from a car into a flying car. its a claim that we can test. so its a scientific claim against the evolution of bird.


(Dcscccc) #14

chirsty, this process need a lots of parts (maybe even hundreds of proteins). and the question is how all those systems evolve in the first place\ step by step. its like an automatic car factory. we see that the cars create without any designer involve in the process. but the question is how this factory created.

so again-

1)we found a self replicating motor.
2)we know that a moroe need a designer, even if its self replicate

by the way chirsty, do you think that a car can evolve in the close room that sayed close for a bilions of years?

have a nice day


(Christy Hemphill) #15

I believe God designed life, designed the process of evolution, and sustains and guides the whole system according to his will and sovereign plan. So arguments against atheistic material naturalism don’t really apply to me. And comparing life to engineered machines, even hypothetically self replicating ones, is still pointless. If a tornado swept through a warehouse full of Model T’s, would it leave a 747? Obviously not. But who cares? I reject the analogy as applying to biology, you need a better argument.


#16

The article on the Evolution News website was written by Casey Luskin. He’s an attorney who spends a lot of his time denying The Theory of Evolution and trying to convince readers that science is hopelessly unreliable. (Why? If one can convince readers of the latter, the former becomes much easier to deny.) His obfuscations are frustrating enough–but I’ve also found that he so often dishonestly quote-mines and skews facts.

No doubt many who deny The Theory of Evolution thinks his website is entirely truthful and his “scientific insights” profound. At times I’ve gone to the effort of carefully documenting examples of what I just described, and I’ve found that my efforts were in vain because what I wrote in critiquing Luskin’s propaganda was already well understood by those of my readers who are scientists and my documentation was ignored by those who think Luskin is a science genius and always a reliable source on science. So all I can conclude is that when one’s priorities are based on something other than the scientific evidence, depending upon an attorney for one’s science information won’t seem strange at all.

Is the website truly about “evolution news”? No. Does the author ever cover the “evolution news” which on a daily basis affirms the validity of The Theory of Evolution? No. The fact that an attorney and not a scientist chooses the domain name “evolution news” but only selects sound bites and obfuscations which hope to encourage denial of evolutionary biology should at least lead one to question the honesty of “evolution news”. EvolutionNews.org is analogous to Rush Limbaugh creating a website named “DemocraticPartyNews.org” or Planned Parenthood publishing a “RightToLifeNews.com”. I would hold the same kind of negative opinion if old earther Hugh Ross were to start a website like YoungEarthCreationismNews.org. [I doubt that Dr. Ross would ever do that. Even though I disagree with him on some of his scientific hypotheses I find him honest, courteous, and straightforward when disagreeing with others.]


(Dcscccc) #17

prof tertius. the evolution news site actually have a lot of articles by phd scientists. about luskin- he actually have a B.S. and M.S. in earth sciences and he bring references to is claims. so i dont see any problem.


(Dcscccc) #18

hi christy. you said:

“I believe God designed life, designed the process of evolution, and sustains and guides the whole system according to his will and sovereign plan”-

ok. so you doesnt believe in a darwinian evolution but in a guided evolution.

about my sef replicating watch argument. the claim base on the design traits that we see in nature. even prof dawkins claim that : “Biology is the study of complex things that appear to have been designed for a purpose. Physics books may be complicated, but …The objects and phenomena that a physics book describes are simpler than a single cell in the body of its author. And the author consists of trillions of those cells, many of them different from each other, organized with intricate architecture and precision-engineering into a working machine capable of writing a book. (the blind watchmaker” p1-3.: ")

so the evidences for design in nature is real. now, i gave an example of the flagellum motor. again, its a real spining motor. and it have a self replicating system that replicate it. so its indeed, a real self replicating motor. so if a theoretic self replicating watch (or you can think even about a self replicating walking robot) need a designer, why not a self replicating motor that is far more complex?

my second argument isnt about this argument but about somehing else. according to the evolution theory, a bacteria can evolve into a human. so according to this- if we will close a giant room (with earth conditions) for a bilions of years, then the bacteria in the close room can evolve into a human that will make a car= a car evolve in a close room. what do you think about those arguments?


(Christy Hemphill) #19

I think they show a fundamental misunderstanding of what the evolutionary theory claims. All adaptations are driven by changes in environment, not by sitting in a closed room with earth-like conditions. Why are you so obsessed with machines? I don’t argue that there is no Designer. I am pretty sure that you can’t scientifically prove there is a Designer, but I don’t care, because I believe the Bible is revelation from God. Besides that, proving scientifically that there is a generic Designer does not get you any closer to Yahweh of biblical revelation or to Jesus Christ, the only way of reconciliation between God and humanity. You can believe in a Designer all day, but if you reject Christ, you are still dead in your sins and far from God, so what did it really get you, and why so much emphasis on proving it?


(Roger A. Sawtelle) #20

@Christy

Thank you for this statement. I am in complete agreement, but the scientists tell me that I am wrong as to how I understand evolution. They say that genetic mutations drive evolution and the selfish struggle for survival, rather than the drive to adapt, drives natural selection.

As noted above I see the evolution of birds from dinosaurs as refuting the Darwinian scientific view of evolution. What do you think?