The National Geographic published in its APRIL 2003 issue an article titled “The Rise of Mammals.” In this rather long article decorated with imaginary evolution trees and pretty pictures, the author, Rick Gore, put forward evolutionist speculations on the origin of mammals, one of the darkest corners in the house of the evolution theory. The magazine listed and classified extinct species for their various characteristics and asserted that they represented the stages in the long process of the mammals’ evolution without providing even a hint of a scientific explanation therefore.
In reality, mammals have unique and complex characteristics, inexplicable by evolution. Ignoring this fact, the National Geographic tries to support the evolution theory by interpreting various fossils according to its prejudices, but we will expose in this article the National Geographic’s Darwinist bias and errors.
However, before proceeding to deal with the speculations on the creatures in the aforementioned article, we must take a look at the evolution theory’s claims on mammals or perhaps, the dead-end the mammals lead the theory into.
Evolutionists claim that mammals evolved from reptiles but the anatomical and physical differences between the two are unbridgeable. Mammals are warm-blooded (create and maintain their own body temperature), give birth, suckle their young and their bodies are furred. Reptiles on the other hand are cold-blooded (do not produce body heat and their body temperature alters according to their environment’s), reproduce by hatching eggs, do not suckle their offspring and their bodies are scaled.
The hypothetical claim of such different species developing from one into the other needs some serious explaining. For instance, how can the cold-blooded metabolism of a reptile change in time into a warm-blooded one, which produces and regulates its own body heat? How is it that creatures reproducing by egg laying can come to develop a complex life-supporting placenta and begin to give birth to their young? Or how can it be that the hard-scaled skin of a reptile can become a furred one? And, most importantly, how can the transitory forms sustain their species and survive this imaginary gradual transition. The chances of survival of a creature half warm half cold-blooded, laying eggs as well as placenta producing and having scales as well as fur is negligible. Nevertheless, evolutionists believe that such creatures existed in the past and continue to defend stubbornly the claim that mammals evolved, even though they cannot find any scientific evidence for it. The only thing they can do is to tell tales, paint impressive pictures from the imagination and line up neatly the excavated fossils trying thereby to prove this imaginary transition. One of the most effective practitioners of this tactic is no doubt the National Geographic.
FOSSILS AND THE PREJUDICES OF THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC
Right at the beginning of the article was the picture of a fossil named Eomaia scansoria placed and claimed, that it was the ‘dawn mother’ meaning that it was the ancestor of all placental mammals.
This fossil, discovered last year in China, dated at 125 million years, was 50 million years older than the oldest known mammal known to date. This well preserved creature resembled mice, was furred and appeared to have been able to climb trees. But the National Geographic took these suppositions way further by claiming that this creature had been advancing on the evolutionary line leading to the placental reproduction and that discoveries of such fossils were providing an insight into how mammals came out, adapted and developed.
The claim that this creature was a species on the evolutionary way leading to be placental was derived from the imagination. The news desks of the Nature magazine releasing a scientific article on this fossil did not state categorically that this creature lacked a placenta.1 In short, all the claims put forward on the placenta are no more than speculation. Contrary to the article by National Geographic, the websites of the CNN2 and BBC3 were inclined to categorize this creature with placental mammals and reported accordingly.
In reality, this fossil is more of a hindrance rather than assistance to the claim of the evolution of mammals. With this finding, it takes the known age of the oldest placental mammals back by 50 million years and thus narrowed the time interval of the supposed evolution of placental mammals at the same extent. In this situation, the evolutionists are forced to explain how such a complex structure could have evolved in so much less time.
This creature has none of the ‘primitive’ features that would justify the claim of it being the ancestor of placental mammals. Looking at Eomaia scansoria, it is clearly a faultless mammal from 125 million years ago.
The National Geographic then proceeds to show the reconstructed fossil of Hadrocodium wui and states that this creature from 195 million years ago had some of the features of modern man, like middle ear bones were separated from the jaw and a large scull. The author comments that scientists had believed such transitions to have occurred much later and claims that this development was a stage in the supposed evolution of mammals.
The Hadrocodium wui is a small fossilized scull bone discovered in China. Interestingly, it has a largish scull in relation to the rest of its body and a middle ear design as seen in mammals. This find took the known age of mammals of similar characteristics back in time by another 40 million years and evolutionist, looking at the scull and middle ear features of this creature, claim that these had been acquired in the evolution process of mammals.
This discovery, like the Eomaia scansoria, shows that mammal specific characteristics existed a very long time ago and poses thus difficulties for the evolution scenarios. It truly caught evolutionists off-guard because the brain as well as the middle ear are very complex structures. How could they explain the appearance of such complexity at such an impossibly early period with blind coincidences and not just once but twice? The question as to how two very complex features of mammals could have evolved by chance over such a short period of time remains unanswered by evolutionists.
An objective inquiry into this only 12mm long scull, containing a large brain and complex middle ear structures, reveals a micro-engineering miracle. Life supporting organs carrying out sophisticated functions have been organized and placed into a tiny area realizing the ‘optimum’ design principle envisaged by computer engineers, who aim to place maximum performance and function into the smallest possible volume. To suggest that the Hadrocodium wui is primitive is as meaningful as the claim that palmtop computers are ‘primitive’. The complex design of this creature is clear evidence that it did not come about by coincidental evolution but by intelligent design.
One of the life forms claimed to support the evolution theory in Gore’s article is the Jeholodens jenkinsi estimated to date from 125 million years ago. The National Geographic states that the fossil found in 1999 in China possessed a clavicle revolving around itself and suggest that this played an important role in the transition to an upright position. The article claims that this feature of the J. Jenkinsi is an evolutionary development.
In reality the attempt by the National Geographic of producing this creature as evidence for evolution is a blatant act of deception, because this characteristic of the J. Jenkinsi is not found in the monotremes, a form claimed by evolutionists to have evolved much later (one of the three existing forms of mammals: placental, marsupials and monotremes). Allegorically, this situation is like cars of 1910 having ABS braking systems but those of today not. Some evolutionist publications admit that this is a strange circumstance to deal with for the evolution theory. For instance the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s website acknowledges that the J. Jenkinsi raises more questions than providing answers on the subject of the mammals’ evolution.4 The National Geographic on the other hand, known for its Darwinist bias, does not show this kind of objectivity and displays once more its bigotry in this matter by misconstruing every scientific discovery for the benefit of the evolution theory.
One of the fundamental requirements for an improvement in systems is new information. For example, in order to develop a robotic arm, maneuverable like the human hand, much hard work and engineering know-how is required.
For evolutionists, the question of how such improved data can accumulate by blind coincidences or, to phrase it differently, how random mutations in the DNA can accrue the knowledge of such efficient improvements remains unanswerable, because there is not one mutation known to have added information to any organism and thereby providing it with new and beneficial characteristics.
In short, the National Geographic’s claim here is a fallacious act of deception without any scientific value whatsoever.
This blind dedication to Darwinism revealed itself also in a fossil used to support the supposed evolution of the sea mammal manatee. The National Geographic claims that a fossil discovered in Jamaica by the paleontologist Daryl Domning in 2001is the so-called evolutionary ancestor of the manatees. The well-preserved 50 million years old skeleton named Pezosiren portelli is presumed to have belonged to a hippopotamus-like creature. The National Geographic puts forward pro evolution claims on the Pezosiren portelli based entirely on its power of imagination.
The Pezosiren portelli possessed a skeleton and strong legs capable of supporting its bodyweight out of water. Domning, in his article published in the Nature magazine describes this characteristic of the animal: This animal was fully capable of locomotion on land, with four well-developed legs, a multivertebral sacrum, and a strong sacroiliac articulation that could support the weight of the body out of water as in land mammals. 5
Anatomically, the Pezosiren portelli was almost indistinguishable from land mammals. The apparent reason for Domning’s assertion that this was an animal in the process of evolving into a sea mammal was the relatively set back location of its nostrils and that it lacked paranasal sinuses. The cause for Domning’s excitement because of its setback nostrils is the fact that sea mammals like whales and dolphins have their nostrils located on the crown of the head. Evolutionists presume that land mammals evolved gradually into sea mammals and in the process of this development, the nostrils located at the front part of the scull became more and more setback towards the crown. This supposition however has no bearings on the manatees, because their nostrils, as seen in the picture below, are located at the front. For this reason their nostrils do not open upwards and it would be inconsistent to consider them within the hypothesis put forward in relation to the change of the nostrils’ location.
Another inconsistency in the evolution scenario of the manatees’ nostrils reveals itself in the fact that manatees sleep underwater and keep their nostrils shut while asleep. Nasal valves keep the air trapped inside and the water out during their sleep. The question that needs answering by evolutionists is how such functional valves, essential for the prevention of drowning during sleep, could have evolved by blind and random mutations. Despite the lack of a rational explanation, evolutionists still stubbornly believe that it nevertheless happened.
In reality such preventive systems are the product of conscious design like, for instance, the valves controlling the water intake in mini submarines. The ‘valves’ located inside the nostrils are from a survival point of view exactly at the right place and in the right form to seal the opening. It is obvious that this functionality in the manatees, which are in and out the water, is by design. Similar features can be observed in the valves of submarines, obviously designed and built by engineers. To claim that these were placed there accidentally would be irrational just like it is irrational to suggest that the ‘valves’ in the manatees nostrils developed there by blind coincidental mutations.
The National Geographic disregards all this, tells a story about the Pezosiren portelli gradually loosing its hind legs, that the front legs transformed themselves in time into flippers and that it finally became a manatee. In reality, the Pezosiren portelli is nothing other than an extinct land mammal. Its ability to sustain itself in water does not suffice to support the claim that it is the ancestor of the manatee. The hippopotamus of today is a creature spending much of its time in the water, but this situation does not mean that they, some time in the future, will have their legs transformed into flippers and become sea mammals living in the sea. It is possible to detect similarities between a car and a bicycle; they both have wheels but it would be just ridiculous to claim that cars gradually loose some of its wheels and turn into bicycles. Likewise it is ridiculous to propose that the Pizosiren portelli evolved gradually into manatees without showing any of the supposed evolution mechanisms taking place, for instance the mutations responsible for the development of the flippers. There is no end to the transformation stories created by drawing similarities between existing living beings. What matters is whether it is possible to explain biologically how it happened or not and whether it is possible to show the existence of the transitional forms. Evolutionists cannot do either.
As we have seen, the claims put forward on the evolution of the manatees are only speculative scenarios without scientific value.
Interestingly, the National Geographic appears to be the foremost mouthpiece of such forced speculations. As the Archaeoraptor swindle showed, the National Geographic easily picks up on fossil discoveries claimed to be transitional forms and uses them as propaganda material. The National Geographic’s ‘tabloid mentality’, criticized even by evolutionists, has revealed itself here once more.
The National Geographic has adopted the dogma of manatees evolving from land mammals over time and abuses fossil finds to suit its imaginary scenarios.
The last important fossil discovery tried to be employed as evidence to support the evolution theory in the article “The Rise of the Mammals,’ is the Eosimias. The National Geographic did not print any photographs of the fossil but contended with publishing a reconstruction model thereof. From the picture we gather that the animal was about the size of a human hand, we are informed that it was dated to be about 45 million years old, then, some evolutionary claims are made. The scientist making the discovery of Eosimias is Chris Beard, who claims that it is the ancestor of the anthropoids, a category supposed to include man, apes and monkeys. These creatures could move around the treetops, evolved and settled in the dense forests in the proximity of the equatorial latitude, it is claimed. The article reveals more details on these creatures: they had a big appetite, went around in gangs, and that they probably never left the tree canopy where they were born.
Amazingly, the National Geographic, providing such a detailed account of this mammal, claimed to be the ancestor of man, fails to produce the most significant information of all: fossil discoveries.
The Eosimias, in spite of this detailed portrayal, was actually first defined following the discovery of only a few teeth and a jaw bone in the nineties in China and is a rather controversial species. At first, evolutionists could not agree on where to place it on the evolution tree. Further fossils were discovered in the year 2000 and a consensus seemed to have been reached by evolutionists who placed it somewhere between the lemurs, defined as primitive primates and the anthropoids, acknowledged to be advanced primates. But the latest fossils were far from providing any meaningful information on the species, because they were bone fragments no bigger than rice grains!
The picture below right is the Eosimias picture published by the Time magazine and the one on the left, appeared in the National Geographic. When the two are compared, the National Geographic’s power of imagination’s scale becomes apparent. It can evidently produce anything from next to nothing.
The truly interesting side to the story is that it has not been possible to ascertain whether the grain sized fossils belonged to the Eosimias or not. The only reason behind the evolutionists claim for it to be so is that they were discovered in the same area and layer as the discovery made in the nineties. There is no valid reason why these tiny bones, dated to be 42 million years old, should not belong to another creature. Even some evolutionists contend that they cannot be ascribed to the Eosimias. 7
The National Geographic does not mention the size of these bone fragments nor the existing controversy behind them and goes as far as claiming that they belonged to the ancestor of man. But when what was concealed about the fossils is revealed, the magic of the captivating pictures decorating the shiny pages of the National Geographic quickly disperses and the evolutionists’ hopelessness becomes apparent. The evolutionists give life in their drawings and tales, originating in their imagination, to the always missing links they never seem to be able to find.
Eosimias (National Geographic)
THE CONTRADICTIONS IN THE GENETICAL AND ANATOMICAL EVOLUTION TREES AND WHAT THEY MEAN
The National Geographic speaks of the classification of the mammal species and lets scientists who contend that classification should be according to genetic similarities come to word as well as those who are for classification by anatomical similarities.
Before the advent of DNA analysis techniques, supposed evolutionary relationships were defined according to anatomical similarities. As the knowledge on DNA increased and DNA analysis developed, the common ancestry of all beings dogma was adapted accordingly. Scientists began by taking DNA samples of existing beings, compared them and began to investigate the relationships and links between the species. These efforts, contrary to expectations, did not support the evolution tree but brought to light the inherent contradictions. Similarities in the DNA did not coincide with anatomical similarities. The contradictions were on such a scale that creatures like whales, cats and bats were classified within the same category because of genetic similarities. Another weird category included the manatee, the elephant and the wood mice.
These contradictions became the subject of criticism by scientists advocating the anatomical criteria, who angrily rebuffed the DNA results, suggesting that the analysis techniques adopted by geneticists, must have been flawed. Criticism, however, is mutual. Evolutionary geneticists accuse the paleontologists of failing to discover the right fossils and every new genetic analysis causes the break down of yet another ‘family’.
In the end, the newly formed categories created wholly inconsistent and controversial families which undermined the family tree rather than supporting it.
A recent examples of this, unmentioned by the National Geographic, was an article by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science magazine, which was published on the 28th of May 2002 in its early internet edition. An international forum of scientists attempted to create the evolutionary family tree by analyzing the mitochondrial DNA of some 60 mammal species. The scientists spoke of some strong relationships between the mammal species but produced yet more contradictions. The article, full of contradictions and disputes, undermined the evolution scenarios contrary to its purpose.
To summarize, these phylogenetic comparisons revealed two errors made by evolutionists:
– The evolution trees reprinted in countless textbooks and magazines to date are being refuted by evolutionists themselves.
– Creating evolutionary families based on molecular or genetic similarities (like the relation between man and chimpanzees) is unsustainable, because creatures of totally different living environments, skeleton design and size can show great genetic similarities.
Most importantly, these disputes reveal that evolutionists, even though they could alter their views on all kinds of family trees and related species, they will never desert the dogma of life being an accidental development. Despite no evidence having emerged in support of the evolution theory in the last 150 years and all the controversy surrounding it, one imaginary evolution scenario follows another engaging the public mind and the theory is still with us today. To evolutionists it matters more to reject the intelligent design reality behind all living beings than to discover whether the elephant is more closely related to the cat or the bat.
THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHY’S ERROR OF THE PENTADACTYL COMMON ANCESTOR
One of the more important errors contained in the article is the claim, after giving examples of various pentadactyl mammals, that they are all the descendents of a pentadactyl common ancestor. X-ray pictures of the relevant limbs of pandas, dolphins and bats were published, accompanied by the claim that these existing limbs were structures evolved from one common ancestor continuing in their ongoing development.
This erroneous claim is almost as old as the evolution theory itself. At its root lie the similarities of the pentadactyl structure seen in tetrapods. The bones in the tetrapods’ feet, flippers or wings are arranged in five lines.
Evolutionists claimed that these creatures descended from one common ancestor and interpreted the pentadactyl structure as evidence thereof for a very long time now. However, research into the various categories of tetrapods alongside advancements in molecular biology and genetics revealed that there is no scientific basis for this claim and it is certain that there is no scientific value to it either.
For instance, the evolutionist biologist M. Coates stated in two separate articles, published in 1991 and 1996, that the pentadactyl structure appeared independently on two occasions.8 According to Coates, the pentadactyl structure evolved in the Anthracosaurs and in amphibians separately in which case the pendactyl structure cannot be interpreted as evidence for the common ancestry supposition.
The real blow to the evolutionist claim of pentadactyl common ancestry came from molecular biology. The pentadactyl communality hypothesis, defended for so long by evolutionist publications, collapsed when it was revealed that the pentadactyl structures in different animals were controlled by very different genes. The evolutionist biologist William Fix, words the evolutionist position’s collapse on the pentadactyl structure like this:
The older textbooks on evolution make much of the idea of homology, pointing out the obvious resemblances between the skeletons of the limbs of different animals. Thus the `pentadactyl” [five bone] limb pattern is found in the arm of a man, the wing of a bird, and flipper of a whale, and this is held to indicate their common origin. Now if these various structures were transmitted by the same gene couples, varied from time to time by mutations and acted upon by environmental selection, the theory would make good sense. Unfortunately this is not the case. Homologous organs are now known to be produced by totally different gene complexes in the different species. The concept of homology in terms of similar genes handed on from a common ancestor has broken down. 9
The National Geographic on the other hand, ignores these blows to the pentadactyl hypothesis and continues in its error in the face of scientific discoveries exposing the thesis as a false tale.
THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC’S MISCONSTRUCTIONS ON SUCKLING
Another noticeable misconstruction in the article is to do with the scenarios on the evolution of mammals’ suckling phenomenon. It is not possible for evolutionists to explain how a highly nutritious fluid like milk and the glands that enable the delivery thereof to the baby have formed. One of the most complex and surprising aspects of milk is its composition, which adjusts according to the altering needs of the baby as it grows. Here, two separate organisms (mother and baby) and DNA exist but their genes collaborate at the right time in the right way. The question as to how the mothers’ genes accidentally began to work in unison with the baby’s genes controlling its growth and therefore the need for food, remains unanswered by evolutionists. How did a reptile, devoid of milk glands and the habit of suckling come to have such a perfect fluid and the glands that produce it? This is one of the biggest obstacles facing the mammals’ evolution scenarios.
The National Geographic chooses to bypass this obstacle by means of a deceptive trick. It states to begin with, that scientists believe that milk glands evolved from the sweat glands found at the roots of body hair and proceeds then to say that the platypus, a native of Australia, provides an insight into the workings of these primitive milk glands.
The platypus does not have nipples, instead, the milk glands secrete the milk in a certain area into the fur, from where the baby drinks it by sucking and licking.
The National Geographic does not provide any explanation for the evolution of the suckling system it advocates, leaves the real issue in the dark and diverts the attention pointlessly to the platypus. Although the platypus does not possess nipples, it produces, secretes and delivers the milk perfectly and efficiently to its baby. This faultless system cannot be compared in any way to the wholly imaginary ‘primitive’ suckling system. To illustrate, a single engine, propeller driven airplane does not have the jet engine of a fighter plane or its advantages but nevertheless fulfills its purpose faultlessly. In this case, it would be absurd to consider two different designs, both fulfilling their respective purposes, but attempting to explain the origin of one with the other. Likewise the suckling system of the platypus cannot be used as evidence for the evolution of the placental mammals’ suckling system.
What would be expected of evolutionists is not to regard the anyhow perfect systems and then to speculate from there on imaginary ‘primitive’ ones, but to explain how random mutations, dependent on blind coincidences could fit out a creature like reptiles, without disrupting the continuity of the species, with such complex systems they have never possessed. It is obvious that the supposition of such systems occurring by the processes of evolution would, inevitably, lead also to the production of fluids without any nutritional value or even toxic ones along the way and have stages where, for instance, blocked or dysfunctional glands prevent their delivery to the baby, in which case both, mother and baby, would eventually die and the species continuity would terminate.
Furthermore, to term the platypus’ suckling system ‘primitive’ is not consistent with the evolution theory. The comparison of the platypus’ system with the imaginary ‘primitive’ milk glands, claimed to have evolved in placental mammals millions of years ago, shows that the author presumes that the platypus’ system is older in terms of evolution. This though raises another question for the evolutionists to answer: How come the two systems, one an improved version developing from the other, continue to exist side by side over millions of years to the present day. How is it that a so-called primitive form, after the evolution of a superior form from it, can continue to exist for such a long time without being eliminated?
All these restrictions force from time to time some evolutionists to acknowledge the dire straits in which the mammals’ evolution scenarios really are. One of these is the evolutionist paleontologist Roger Lewin, whose ‘how the transition to the first mammal occurred remains a mystery’ statement still preserves its validity.
The National Geographic though does not show the same objectivity. It is persisting in its blind dedication to Darwinism and paradoxically, continues resolutely to try and keep it alive.
The National Geographic makes an enormous mistake by supporting the evolution scenarios of mammals with illusionary pictures and tales.
Our advise to the National Geographic is that it should acknowledge the blows dealt to the evolution theory by the fossil record. It should cease to try resisting these facts with tiny fossil bones. The era of telling tall tales about the supposed evolution of complex life forms like mammals is over, because modern sciences and the means of communication enable more and more people to inform themselves on the complexity of life and the inadequacy of the evolution theory in explaining it. Day by day it is better understood and more widely known that Darwinism is in the process of disintegration and nothing can prevent the inevitable end of this for a 150 years continued lie.
1. “Tree-climbing with dinosaurs”, John Whitfield, Nature Science Update, 25 April 2002:
2. “Fossilized shrew could be ancient human kin”, 24 April 2002: http://www.cnn.com/2002/TECH/science/04/24/early.mammal/
3. “Fossil sheds light on early mammals”, Corinne Podger, 24 April 2002: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/1949644.stm
4. “Ancient Chinese Mini-mammal”, 25 Mart 1999: http://www.abc.net.au/science/news/stories/s20411.htm
5. “The earliest known fully quadrupedal sirenian” D. P. DOMNING, Nature, 11 October 2001
fs.html&filetype=&_UserReference=C0A804F54650B91AAAEDAA76B66C3EC2303F 6. Time, 27 March 2000, p. 84
7. “Tiny bones tell evolution story”, 17 March 2000: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/678458.stm
8. Coates M. 1991. New palaeontological contributions to limb ontogeny and phylogeny. In: J. R. Hinchcliffe (ed.) Developmental Patterning of the Vertebrate Limb 325-337. New York: Plenum Press; Coates M. I. 1996. The Devonian tetrapod Acanthostega gunnari Jarvik: postcranial anatomy, basal tetrapod interrelationships and patterns of skeletal evolution. Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh 87: 363-421.
9. Fix, William, The Bone Peddlers: Selling Evolution (New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., 1984), p. 189