Interesting ancestrial whale fossil

Interesting fossil find filling in the blanks in whale evolution. This has been around awhile so may have been discussed, but just saw it on Scot McKnight’s Facebook feed, which is interesting in itself. He referred back to Dr. Venema’s comments in Adam and the Genome. Now, the question is: Did Noah have one (two really) on the ark?:wink:
Every new fossil and genetic find supports evolution, and it seems like that should be somewhat convicting but whatever.


I should show this to my son. He’s been brainwashed at church enough that when I asked him if whale evolution was convincing, he said no because the whales with legs found around sea animals were just mixed up with other animals in the flood. :roll_eyes:

We’re doing Biology this year. It’s going to be a fun year!

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Following the link to the original article gives some more info and an interesting video:

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Just because it has cetus in it’s name doesn’t make it a whale

Peregocetus pacificus, 43-million-year–old walking whale?

Where are the normal diagnostic criteria for cetaceans, such as powerful swimming tail, preferably with horizontal flukes, a blow hole, obligate aquatic body design, and middle and inner ears in a cavity outside the skull not inside it as with terrestrial mammals? (See also Whale evolution?) And it had a well-developed shoulder and hip girdle attached to its spinal column, with well-developed legs. Its feet even had hooves, so it could walk on land.


No, there are no four-legged whales. This should go without saying, by the normal meanings of words. But sadly not, with the dogma of land-mammal–to–whale evolution. This new find, Peregocetus, was certainly four-legged, and could stand and walk on land, but it was equally certainly not a whale. Furthermore, it is ‘dated’ as millions of years younger than some much more ‘whale-like’ creatures, opposite to the claimed evolutionary sequence. And there is too little time for mutations and selection to have evolved Peregocetus into something like a Basilosaurus.

A much better explanation is that God created whales fully formed, and on day 5—a day before He created land creatures, including those of the created kind comprising Peregocetus.

@Boscopup, I suggest you read this article too.

If you read this article you will see why it is classified as a whale. They don’t just pluck names out of a hat. To a non-biologist this looks very much like a transitional fossil. You know the kind that don’t exist. :wink:


Yeah definitely. You know I think that we had our evolutionist goggles on today and just simply accepted the convincing evidence of this transitional form because of the name of the specimen and none of the other details.

And the quotes that you provided have demonstrated absolutely nothing. Part of the quote is just an argument from incredulity and the rest could have been cleared up if the author watched and understood the video explaining the paper in more detail.


One thing I’ve noticed is that YEC articles do not address the breadth of the evidence we have. For example, with cetacean evolution we have numerous lines of evidence for a transition from land animals.

Cetacean embryos have four limbs for a short period of their development. Why?

Cetacean embryos have nostrils on the front of their faces for a short period of their development. Why?

Toothed whales (odontocetes) have the defective remnants of genes used in other mammals for air-based olfaction (smelling). Why?

When looking at genomes, cetaceans most closely match the genomes of living artiodactyls, the very group of organisms that the fossil transitional cetaceans are from. Why?


Thanks for that quote. I use stuff like this as a teaching tool when teaching evolution. My students have to explain why this type of thinking is erroneous. It’s always good to have new examples. :slight_smile:

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I’ve been known to include quotes just like this on my exams as well. It really is a great tool for identifying who gets the concepts and who has just tried to memorize facts. The misconception in this quote is so prevalent we could probably pull out 30 examples from the YEC lit without much effort.

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Is the misconception the idea that if species A evolves to species B, species A can’t still exist alongside species B or even persist beyond species B?

Still learning, but I’m teaching my YEC son high school biology this year, so I’m gaining as much knowledge as I can! He currently thinks you have to choose between Christianity and evolution, and I do NOT want him thinking that.

My HFA 7th grade son has been caught in time. He’s intrigued by evolution and asking all kinds of great (hard) questions. So glad I’ve been studying the topic heavily in recent years!


I think that is part of it, but also that most fossils found may not be transitional in the sense of being in the direct lineage of a later species, but rather on a side branch. To use your example, A may be an ancestor to B, but is also the ancestor to C. B may then give rise to D. You may then find a fossil of C, but have none of B. C then is not in the linage of D, but may help in filling in the gaps.


So… nested hierarchies?

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There’s a great activity in Integrate with whale fossils. :slight_smile:

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Which unit? We did Christians Accepting Evolution, and it had a video on whale evolution, but my son wasn’t convinced. I’ve seen articles go into more depth than that video, so I need to pull those out. We’ve just started broaching the subject, starting with that Integrate unit. I didn’t realize how far into YEC he was until we did that. I think some of the high school devotionals he attends must have been teaching them stuff. He gives bad arguments, but it’s hard to even figure out where to begin to correct it all. I started with having him read Walton’s books to see another view of Genesis 1-2, since that was his main concern about evolution.

Just yesterday, talking about scientific theories with all 3 school aged kids, my oldest said, “Like the theory of evolution, but it isn’t true.” I had JUST explained what a scientific theory is, and he was using it like a common theory. :woman_facepalming: I just said, “Evolution is true” and continued on. We’re still in the beginning of the curriculum where you’re talking about what science is.

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Unit 12- The Fossil Record and Faith. I’m not sure if it’s one of the ones they have out for piloting yet.

Ok, that’s what I listed as my first choice for this year. :slight_smile:

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So in order to convince me that Peregocetus pacificus is a whale you posted an article about Mystacodon selenensis?

Hi Chris - I posted some questions for you up there. ^^ Any thoughts?

This is a great topic for discussion–how to talk with your close family members (especially children) about evolution, especially if they disagree with you. I am not sure what to do.

Thankfully, my son isn’t defensive. And I told him that I don’t care if he believes YEC or mainstream science, but that what I want him to get out of our discussions is the fact that you don’t have to choose between Christianity and evolution. That is such a dangerous teaching. I’ve seen the atheists created by it, and I’ve experienced the difficulty in coming back from atheism because of that teaching. I can see God in the process of evolution, so that’s not a problem. And I am comfortable with an inerrant Bible and science together. But telling me I have to choose? I believe both are true. Why do I need to choose?