Monday, 3 June 2013


The Galapagos Islands contain a very large number of different finches, as well as flamingos, penguins, giant tortoises, iguanas, seals, butterflies, and insects. Forty-two percent of the plants found on the Galapagos, seventy-five percent of the bird species and ninety-one percent of the reptiles and mammals are not found anywhere else in the world. Darwin’s name is long associated with these finches though he did not discover them, properly identify them or even use them in his book, Origin of the Species by natural Selection.  

Actually, it was not Darwin who mythologized the Galapagos finches, but 20th century evolutionists such as Percy Lowe and David Lack. Lack's 1947 book Darwin's Finches was an icon-maker for the Darwinists [1].  Thus Darwin's finches have been studied more than any other bird families.  In 1991 Peter Grant claimed he had found 20 cases of natural selection turning a middle ground finch into a great ground finch. This, he claimed, was direct evidence of evolution [2]. So has one species been transformed into another? A species is defined as a population consisting of individuals with similar structural and functional characteristics, able to mate only with one another in nature, and which are unable to mate successfully with other individuals outside their own population. 

According to this definition, it is incorrect to claim 14 distinct species of finches in the Galapagos Islands as they interbreed significantly. Indeed, Grant himself admits that a maximum of 6 separate species and perhaps less than the 14 recognized currently [3]. Darwin’s claim in the Origin was that his natural selection could be responsible not only for variation within a species but for the origin of species or transpeciation from one species to another.  The Galapagos finches have no genetic differences among them [4]. Max Planck Institute and Princeton University in 1999 announced that the traditional classification of Galapagos finches was not apparent at the molecular level [5] and Hau and Wikelski state, "There is no evidence for an absolute genetic barrier between Darwin's finch species. Thus many species can potentially hybridize.” [6] All evidence points to the fact that they are all the same species.

finches 1. Geospiza magninostris 2. Geospiza fortis 3. Geospiza parvula 4. Certhidea olivecea

 Much of Grant’s claim emphasized the change in beak size. The average size of the Galapagos finches' beaks increases or decreases according to food resources and that depends greatly of the rainfall. El Niño takes place at irregular intervals every two and 11 years, and at different levels of intensity, also alters the climatic balances. At such times there is excessive rainfall; subsequent years are then generally dry and arid. In years of plentiful rain, ground finches can easily obtain the seeds they need to grow and breed. In years of drought, however, the plants on the islands may produce a limited amount of seeds and the number of finches decrease.  The rainfall in 1976 was normal, but fell to one-fifth in 1977. During the drought there was a significant drop in the quantity of seeds and a major reduction in the numbers of ground finches. The population fell 85%. The finches that survived the drought were rather larger than normal and had 5% wider beaks.  

When the rains returned the Darwinian process reversed and the finches returned to their previous size and previous beaks. Yet, in his book, Weiner described this change in the beak as "the best and the most detailed demonstration to date of the power of Darwin's process. [7]" The fact that a reversal occurred after the drought resulting in no long-term evolutionary change is neither mentioned nor interpreted.   California University biologist, Dr Jonathan Wells, stated the claims from the finch evidence were "exaggerated" [8].  Berkeley University's Professor Phillip Johnson said in the Wall Street Journal, "When our leading scientists have to resort to the sort of distortion that would land a stock promoter in jail, you know they are in trouble.[9]"

In the research on Darwin’s finches the term natural selection has been used as a substitute for Darwinian evolution. However, Darwin clearly proposed that a change sufficient to create a new species was possible. In his day a substantial change in characteristics may have been essential criteria but in the age of Mendelian genetics and DNA splicing a new species must exhibit new DNA and chromosomal structure. This evidence is completely lacking. 

The error in the Darwinist thinking is one of extrapolation.  A cow jumps over a two-foot fence. From this you cannot deduce from that that a cow can jump over the moon. Nonsense! The cow's muscle power is absurdly inadequate to propel it to the moon. As we have seen the power of natural selection can make minor modifications to one aspect of its physiology. But, it is absurdly inadequate to change the DNA that allows reproduction possible. The general public's lack of biological knowledge causes them not to appreciate the extrapolation problem and thus the error in the Darwinist conclusion. Rather than admit that there is no finch evidence for transpeciation Darwinists, such as Grant and Weiner, have substituted subspeciation.   Bait and switch is not a scientific principle.

Now in Genesis Chapter 1, the text clearly states that everything brings forth "after its own kind".  Surely, if fish produce fish and only fish and cattle produce cattle and only cattle then finches produce finches and only finches. So subspeciation is no problem for Genesis. If Darwinism is the natural selection that produces subspeciation in finches - finches that reproduce more finches - then it agrees with Genesis 1. Statements that claim that Darwinism refutes Genesis 1 then are simply false. If, however, Darwinism means fish evolve into cattle which evolve into apes which evolve into humans then the natural selection of finches into finches is moot.  Darwinists must then admit that it is "other" evidence that "proves" evolution. But these other mechanisms have no results that demonstrate their effectiveness and so do not demonstrated the Bible is disproved.  Darwinists mechanisms are either effective and agree with the Bible or are ineffective. Am I to be impressed by these claims?

[2] Peter R. Grant, "Natural Selection and Darwin's Finches," Scientific American, October 1991, p. 82-87.
[3] Peter R. Grant, Op.cit., pp. 127–139.
[4] James L. Patton, "Genetical processes in the Galapagos," Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, Vol. 21, 1984, pp. 91-111; Nancy Jo, "Karyotypic Analysis of Darwin's Finches," in R.I Bowman, M. Berson, A.E. Leviton (editors), Patterns of Evolution in Galapagos Organisms, CA: Pacific Division, AAAS, San Francisco, 1983, pp. 201-217.
[5] A. Sato, C. O'huigin, F. Figueroa, P.R. Grant, B.R. Grant, H. Tichy, J. Klein, "Phylogeny of Darwin's finches as revealed by mtDNA sequences", Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, vol. 96, Issue 9, 27 April 1999, p. 5101-5106.
[6] Michaela Hau, Martin Wikelski, "Darwin's Finches," Encyclopedia of Life Sciences, 2000, ğ
[7] Jonathan Weiner, The Beak of the Finch, New York: Vintage Books, 1994, p. 9.
[8] Jonathan Wells, Icons of Evolution, Regnery Publishing Inc., 2000, pp. 173-174.
[9] Phillip E. Johnson, "The Church of Darwin" The Wall Street Journal, 16 August 1999.

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