Pterosaur Revolution Confirms Creation | The Institute for Creation Research

Pterosaur Revolution Confirms Creation

Research into pterosaurs—ancient flying reptiles whose fossils lie intermingled with dinosaurs—now approaches an upswing of what some predict will be a revolution of understanding.1 Better details of pterosaur anatomies are painting a different picture than the long-held perceptions of these creatures as clumsy fliers.

In a recent feature in the UK's Observer, writer Mark Witton explained that many view pterosaurs as "gargoyles with lanky limbs." This bad reputation may have been spawned by "poor scientific communication" that indicated "pterosaurs were crude biological hang gliders."2

In actuality, experts are now reconstructing pterosaur biomechanics and finding them to be wonders of aerodynamic precision.3 The old notions of clumsiness are not supported by this fossil evidence—so how did pterosaurs get such a bad rap?

Was the description, "gargoyles with lanky limbs," a result of mere evolutionary speculation? Based on seeing pterosaur fossils occur in strata below other flying vertebrates, perhaps evolutionists reasoned that pterosaurs evolved first and therefore represented evolution's initial, clumsy attempts to produce large flyers. It would then follow that evolution spent millions of years working through numerous aerodynamic issues, eventually generating the supposedly superior flight mechanics of bats and birds.

Pterosaur research is now soaring, and it supports that former "clumsy" conjecture less than ever.

For example, pterosaur tracks in France reveal that these creatures were skillful and adept at landing and take-off procedures.4

Moreover, in his Observer article, Witton confirmed that "scientists are getting a handle on many aspects of pterosaur paleobiology [ancient biology], and the results are casting pterosaurs in whole new lights. They were not evolutionary also-rans, but strong, adaptable animals that earned their 160m [million] years of evolutionary history."2

But what an ironic statement! Surely 160 million years of slow and gradual changes to pterosaur anatomy would have produced more "evolutionary also-rans" before developing the "strong, adaptable animals" the fossils actually reveal. Where are all of evolution's experiments?

For example, a single, long bone supported pterosaur wings while bat wings contain five, finger-like bones that fold like a Chinese fan. Where are the two- or three-boned wings or the half-sized wings that evolution might have produced in its alleged eons of tinkering?

Not a single, undisputed "evolutionary also-ran" candidate exists, despite a century of diligent search.5

The evolutionary timeline fails to match the most obvious pterosaur fossil data, but Genesis history readily explains them. First, pterosaur structure was flight-ready from the get-go because God created it to be. Second, a terrible, watery cataclysm like Noah's Flood buried these winged creatures—often in the same layer as dinosaurs, fish, lizards, small mammals, and birds—leaving behind elegant, fully formed pterosaur fossils with no evidence that intermediary "also-ran" versions ever existed.6

References

  1. Hone, D.W.E. 2013. Pterosaur Research: Recent Advances and a Future Revolution. Acta Geologica Sinica. 86 (6): 1366-1376.
  2. Witton, M. Why Pterosaurs Weren't So Scary After All. The Observer. Posted on theguardian.com August 10, 2013, accessed August 23, 2013.
  3. For example, see references in: Thomas, B. Studies Show Extinct Reptiles Moved with Grace and Ease. Creation Science Update. Posted on icr.org November 19, 2010, accessed August 26, 2013. 
  4. Thomas, B. Pterosaur Flight Plans. Creation Science Update. Posted on icr.org August 31, 2009, accessed August 26, 2013.
  5. Sherwin, F. 2005. Pterosaur! Acts & Facts. 34 (9). 
  6. Thomas, B. Pterosaur Tracks Show Traces of the Great Flood. Creation Science Update. Posted on icr.org September 2, 2009, accessed August 26, 2013.

* Mr. Thomas is Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.

Article posted on September 6, 2013.

The Latest
NEWS
Viking DNA Highlights Post-Babel Genetic Diversity
The standard theme often given for Viking history is that of blond-haired, blued-eyed, burly men exploring, trading, ransacking, and pillaging across Europe,...

NEWS
Getting Carbon into the First Cell
Today’s secular mindset replaces “In the beginning God…” with “In the beginning, hydrogen….” The extreme specificity...

NEWS
Secular Science Struggles to Explain Origin of Earth’s Water
Tim Clarey, Ph.D., and Jake Hebert, Ph.D. Secular scientists continue to struggle to explain the origin of Earth’s water. And a new study...

NEWS
South American Plant Fossils Confirm Flood Boundary
Jeffrey P. Tomkins, Ph.D., and Tim Clarey, Ph.D. Fossil pollen, leaf and fruit impressions, and petrified wood taken from multiple locations...

NEWS
Record-Breaking Mouse, Higher Than Any Mammal
Recently, researchers have reported on the world’s “highest-dwelling mammal,” the yellow-rumped leaf-eared mouse, observed upon a dormant...

NEWS
Was This Cave Bear Really “Prehistoric”?
The preserved carcass of a “prehistoric” cave bear has been discovered in melting permafrost on an Arctic Russian Island.1,2 Reindeer...

NEWS
Have Scientists Found Life on Venus?
Secular scientists are obsessed with attempting to show that life on Earth is not unique and therefore must exist, if not elsewhere in our solar system...

NEWS
Inside October 2020 Acts & Facts
What is ICR’s vision for the next chapter of creation ministry? Why do mosquitoes attack humans? How did we celebrate the first anniversary of...

ACTS & FACTS
Abound in This Grace
One of the strongest exhortations for Christian giving is found in Paul’s encouragement to the believers in Corinth. In 2 Corinthians 8, Paul...

APOLOGETICS
Food Web Ecology Corroborates Scripture
Real-world ecology supports the Bible’s trustworthiness. Accordingly, how creatures get and use food matches how Scripture describes our world.1-3 Food...