The above is a paper on hydrodynamic sorting of avian bones.
Two features of this are interesting to me ::
1) The effects of hydrodynamic sorting are being investigated within a mainstream science context to understand it's impact on paleontology and archeaology. Some of the references date back to the 1960's and yet no-one is claiming that the fossil sequences are soley caused in this way (that's my general observation rather than directly about the paper).
2) There is a section in the conclusion of the paper that indicates that predicting where remains will fall is far too difficult because the numbers of variables are high. This suggests to me that hydrodynamic sorting cannot account for systematic order in the fossil record (even within a single location, let alone on a global scale), but can account for anomalies within the fossil record (i.e. remains in unexpected locations).
Assuming this refers to ability to out-run the flood waters, or to survive in a churning ocean, shouldn't we find collections of fast animals in sediments at high elevations, with few if any 'slow' animals there ? Do we find that ?
Why should a creature that can swim and/or live underwater appear consitently lower in the fossil record than those that cannot.
Ammonites spring to mind.
Why should a velociraptor have a lower survival chance than a wolf or lion under flood scenarios ?
What do you mean by that ... sorry I've missed that one in my reading.
Do you mean where they lived originally ? ...like dinosaurs only lived in Montana, and bears only lived in Michigan ?
quote:Originally posted by Tranquility Base: We are proposing that a mix of these mechanisms may explain the fossil record. In any one place all three are operating. We don't pretend that we've proven it.
May explain the fossil record? Does it or doesn't it? So far you've provided nothing that DOES.
This begs the question, why on earth are you "convinced"?
------------------ Occam's razor is not for shaving with.
quote:Originally posted by Tranquility Base: Peter
You've understood our intention pretty well.
We are proposing that a mix of these mechanisms may explain the fossil record. In any one place all three are operating. We don't pretend that we've proven it.
Remember we're also convinced that not all of the 'out of sequence' fossils are explainable by folding or washing in.
That ref you commented on could also be construed as suggesting that while it might be too difficult to predict ordering, at the same time it may still acount for it.
Wouldn't that last point be assuming order out of randomness that most creationists use as an argument against ToE ?
OK so it's not completely random, but the dynamics of the process are so unpredictable that there would need to be some very serious co-incidences going on globally to account for the consistency in the fossil record.
It seems to me that deposition over time, with some remains being washed in/out etc. seems more likely than everything alive at the same time and a nearly random process ordering them. The other suggestions don't really make sense, because we see animals that we have no reason to assume would fare differently under the conditions of a flood in different layers of the fossil record. Especially problematic are aquatic creatures that only appear in the lower levels of the fossil record.
... and the survivability thing falls down further when we consider that some individuals of the same species would survive longer than others due to natural variation within the population, and yet species are pretty much located in the same strata.
There is another flood model that does not use mobility in its argument. It argues that all land-dwelling animals and fossils were all wiped out and destroyed during the flood leaving little trace. It is quite an interesting read. I will copy the most important and interesting part of it for you to take a look at here, from This site: - The Bible describes the events of the first day of the Flood like this:
"In the six hundredth year of Noah's life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened." (Genesis 7:11) According to this passage, the Flood began with the fountains of the great deep breaking up, accompanied by torrential rain. An important question confronts us: what were these fountains of the great deep? A study of the Hebrew indicates that these were pre-Flood terrestrial springs, issuing forth subterranean waters to irrigate the ground (Hasel 1974). Genesis 2:6 indicates that this was how the earth was watered before the Flood. In other words, there appear to have been vast underground water sources beneath the pre-Flood continents.
The Flood was initiated by the breaking up of these fountains of the great deep, releasing vast quantities of possibly superheated water onto the continents. Such an event would have been accompanied by the most catastrophic earthquake, volcanic and tectonic activity (Figure 6). Genesis 6:13 and 9:11 tell us that the Flood did not passively cover the earth, but destroyed it. As the continental crust broke up, the pre-Flood land surfaces were destroyed, and any pre-Flood hills were levelled. The heat released would have baked the crust, producing metamorphic rocks. Much of the water from the fountains may have been ejected high into the atmosphere, to fall as rain. This was the time at which the Flood was at its most violent. Nothing could have survived on land.
This is one of the reasons why it does not make sense to explain the order of the fossil record as a result of the different escape abilities of people and animals as they fled to the hills for refuge, as suggested by Whitcomb and Morris. The continents were being scoured down to their roots - there were no hills to which men and animals could flee! It is difficult to imagine how any terrestrial creatures could have survived the initial fury of the Flood.
Figure 6: A reconstruction of the events of the first day of the Flood (from Robinson 1996 p 45). The Flood began with the breaking up of the fountains of the great deep, accompanied by torrential rain.
The biblical text indicates that all the land-dwelling air-breathing animals were obliterated during this early phase of the Flood. For instance, God said to Noah:
"For yet seven days, and I will cause it to rain upon the earth forty days and forty nights; and every living substance that I have made will I destroy from off the face of the earth." (Genesis 7:4) The text goes on to say:
"And all flesh died that moved upon the earth....All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died. And every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the earth...." (Genesis 7:21-23) It is interesting that the Hebrew word translated "destroyed" in these verses is "machah", the same word used in Psalm 51 in which David is pleading with God to "blot out" his transgressions. When God blots out our sin he remembers it no more: it is as if our sin had never existed. In the same way, the forceful nature of the text in Genesis indicates that the destruction of the land-dwelling air-breathers was total. We should remember again the violence of the Flood. The original land surface was being stripped away, there was widespread volcanism and metamorphism, physical dismemberment by buffeting waters, abrasion and pulverisation by sediments, and chemical decomposition. Not a trace of the land-dwelling air-breathers was left - not even as fossils.
One of the striking features of the geological record is the complete absence of any fossils of air-breathing land animals - or tracks or traces made by them - in the Precambrian or Lower Palaeozoic rocks. Terrestrial air-breathers do not begin to appear in the record until the Upper Palaeozoic. It is suggested, therefore, that the Precambrian and Lower Palaeozoic represent the complete wiping out of the antediluvian world during those first few terrible days of the Flood. As scripture indicates, the land-dwelling air-breathers were completely obliterated without trace.
[This message has been edited by blitz77, 08-01-2002]
That's not how it works most of the time. Almost all fossils are distributed across many multiple strata. There are 'index fossils', sure, but they are only a general guide becasue their extents through the geological column keep expanding back and forward. Familes of genera typically cover 50 million years of strata.
I only recently found the article, so don't ask me much about it.
From this quote from the article, "Living animals can walk and leave footprints; dead animals cannot. We have already emphasised the suddenness and violence of the Flood. The Bible describes the total annihilation of all the pre-Flood air-breathers in the first 40 days of the Flood. We should expect, therefore, to find no evidence of living land animals (e.g. their footprints) in Flood layers, but plenty of evidence of living land animals in post-Flood layers, after the animals had stepped off the Ark and begun to repopulate the earth. We can therefore look at the distribution of footprints in the geological record to help us identify Flood rocks. Figure 10 shows the distribution of tracks (Garton 1996). The Lower Palaeozoic layers are devoid of tracks. Amphibians and reptiles characterise the Upper Palaeozoic, reptiles the Triassic, and dinosaurs (with some birds) the later Mesozoic. In other words, the tracks of air-breathing land animals lie on top of thousands of metres of sediments that contain no tracks. This distribution can be understood if the Flood ends in the Upper Palaeozoic. This would explain why tracks are absent from the Lower Palaeozoic - these are Flood rocks laid down at a time when all the land creatures had perished. It would also explain why the tracks of terrestrial creatures characterise the Mesozoic - these are post-Flood animals descended from those on board the Ark. The amphibian and reptile tracks in the Upper Palaeozoic appear to be those of semi-aquatic creatures that were able to survive outside the Ark (Robinson 1996, pp 52-53). " it would seem that it postulates that the mesozoic is post flood.
The article has interesting ideas, such as this one for explaining why dinosaurs seem to be oldest-because they are the fastest moving land animals after the flood, allowing them to colonize the rest of the world quickest. "In these turbulent post-Flood times major tectonic activity continued. Convincing geological evidence indicates that towards the end of the Flood, the continental plates had collided to form a Cambrian supercontinent, which geologists call Pangaea. This was providential in that it allowed the rapid recolonisation of the Earth by the animals preserved on the Ark. It appears that in early post-Flood times, this supercontinent began to break up. Hot magma rising at the mid-ocean ridges buoyed up the oceanic crust, displacing ocean water onto the continents. This led to the re-inundation of some continental areas after the Flood." This could possibly provide a source of the dinosaur tracks-the dinosaurs recolonizing the world after the flood.
Somewhere else it gives a reason why mammals seem to come after; because Recent studies have indicated that dinosaur reproduction rates were extremely high (Paul 1994). For instance, it is estimated that in about 40 years a sauropod dinosaur could have produced up to 4,000 eggs. In addition, it is thought that the juveniles grew very rapidly. The reproductive output of dinosaurs is thought to have equalled or exceeded that of rodents, and was much higher than large mammals like elephants. This would explain why dinosaurs appear in the fossil record before the mammals, which do not appear in significant numbers until the Cenozoic. Calculations show that elephant reproduction rates, for example, are such that we should not expect to find these creatures fossilised in the first 200 years after the Flood because the population numbers would have been too small (Robinson 1996 pp 63-4). The first indisputable elephant fossils are found in the Eocene, which accords very well with this model, in which the Mesozoic and Cenozoic represent the first two or three centuries after the Flood.
Furthermore, unlike the dinosaurs, which lived on extensive mudflats, mammals prefer habitats away from water, which are less likely to be inundated to result in the fossilisation of their tracks or remains. Mammalian fossils are associated with the catastrophic land-based mountain building events of the Tertiary (Scheven, 1988).
[This message has been edited by blitz77, 08-01-2002]
So what's the deal for these guys - all of the Mesozoic and Cenozic was laid gradually? 1000s and 1000s of feet of sediment? With all of the dinosaur species, reptiles, birds and mammals emerging in some progressive order over how long? Are these guys YECs? Progressive OECs? I can't see how or why they want to have it both ways.
OK - they suggest the post-Paleozoic occurred in the 200-300 years after the flood. They must be suggesting glacial melting or something??
It seems to me that their arguement that there couldn't have been survival in highlands inbetween surges doesn't hold water (pun intended). Why not? The pattern of marine innundations every 70 million years or so (on the evoltuionary timescale) continues on from the Paleozoic into the Mesozoic. These were all flood surges.
[This message has been edited by Tranquility Base, 08-01-2002]
Well, from taking a look at the intro to the article, I think its safe to assume they're YECs. They just say that the dinosaur species, reptiles, birds, and mammals occur in the fossil record in that order because of the time required to move and recolonize the earth, the reproductive rate of the organisms, etc.
The pattern of reinundations you talk about according to the article are due to the post-flood effects. A group of European creationists has argued that the geological record from the Late Carboniferous to the Pleistocene was not laid down during the Flood, but during the turbulent centuries after the Flood. They suggest that the Flood/post-Flood boundary may be within the lower Carboniferous layers. A more detailed treatment of this model may be found in Robinson (1996), Scheven (1996), Garton (1996), Garner (1996a, 1996b), and Tyler (1996), which were published together in the Australian Creation Ex Nihilo Technical Journal.
[This message has been edited by blitz77, 08-01-2002]