A Spanish research team led by the palaeontologist Salvador Moyà-Solà introduced a fossil skeleton consisting of 83 bones in the 19 November 2004 issue of Science magazine. 1 The fossil, discovered near the Spanish village of Els Hostalets de Pierola, was given the name Pierolapithecus catalaunicus, after the region in which it was found. Its age was said to be around 13 million years, and it was announced on Ntvmsnbc.com with the headline “The last common ancestor of man and apes.” This article will reveal the evolutionist errors in the Ntvmsnbc.com report and show why it is that the fossil constitutes no evidence for evolution.
The fossil was described as follows in the Ntvmsnbc.com report:
“Scientists suggest that this species did not swing from branch to branch like the orangutan nor walk with a stoop bending its knees like the chimpanzee. Its anatomy shows that the creature possessed a flexible, agile and powerful upper body and was a good climber. Scientists underline that the shoulder blades of the animal, that was able to stand upright, are on its back.”
Ntvmsnbc.com recounts Darwinist fairy tales regarding this and refers to the discovery as a “missing link” by saying, “the scientists who wrote the article describe the species as a ‘missing link’ between man and ape.”
The fact is, however, that the claim of the missing link is a myth, as even evolutionist scientists have finally had to admit. Constantly faced with the fact that the fossils found show no transition between species, evolutionist scientists have now abandoned this term. American Museum of Natural History palaeontologist and curator Niles Eldredge, one of the United States’ most eminent palaeontologists, and Ian Tattersall, again from the American Museum of Natural History, expressed evolutionists’ despair of ever discovering a missing link thus:
“It is a myth that the evolutionary histories of living things are essentially a matter of discovery. If this were true, one could confidently expect that as more hominid fossils were found the story of human evolution would become clearer. Whereas if anything, the opposite has occurred.” 2
Henry Gee, palaeontologist and editor of the well-known Science magazine Nature, expresses this fact in these terms:
“It should now be quite plain that the very idea of the missing link, always shaky, is now completely untenable.” 3
The really astonishing thing here is the way that Ntvmsnbc.com depicts a scientist who openly states that he is opposed to the term “missing link” as if he had actually made a claim regarding a missing link! The Ntvmsnbc.com report reads:
“Meike Kohler, from the team that carried out the research, describes the Pierolapithecus catalaunicus as the ‘missing link’ in the transition from ape to man.”
This information is in fact totally incorrect. Kohler did not describe the finding as a missing link, and on the contrary stated that he was opposed to the use of the term. Asked by a reporter whether or not he would describe the finding as a missing link, he replied “I don’t like, very much, to use this word.”
It is clear that instead of reporting the scientific claims regarding this finding in a sound manner, Ntvmsnbc.com intends to engage in amateurish Darwinist propaganda. Another clear indication of this emerges in the lines reporting David Strait’s expert comment:
“David Strait, a member of the University at Albany teaching staff, stated that it was still early to use the definition of a transition from ape to man, and that a more methodological study needed to be applied. Saying that the word ‘ancestor’ indicates a direct line of descent, Strait indicated that the fossil was insufficient to prove such a connection.” 4
How interesting, therefore, that the caption for the report in which this comment was carried read “The last common ancestor of man and apes.”! Ntvmsnbc.com is clearly contradicting itself here. And what causes it to fall into that inconsistency is not reporting scientific developments on a sound basis, but its blind intention of engaging in Darwinist propaganda, albeit in an amateurish way.
We advise the Ntvmsnbc.com management to abandon its “tabloid journalism” and sensationalism devoid of any scientific foundation and its blind propaganda on behalf of Darwinism.
What really is the Pierolapithecus catalaunicus discovery?
Moyà-Solà, the leader of the team that carried out the discovery, sets out its importance thus:
“The importance of this new fossil is that for the first time all the key areas that define modern great apes are well-preserved.”
Research shows that the creature’s anatomy is compatible with tree-climbing:
“The new ape”s ribcage, lower spine and wrist display signs of specialised climbing abilities that link it with modern great apes, say the researchers.” 5
What can this creature, that resembles modern-day great apes and possesses features compatible with tree-climbing, be? An extinct ape, of course. Using this fossils’ similarities with and differences from present-day great apes, evolutionists try to consider it within an evolutionary scenario. However, there is an important fact that is not announced to readers on Ntvmsnbc.com: The so-called evolutionary origin of the great apes is entirely shrouded in darkness.
The researchers write in their article in Science magazine:
“In spite of important recent discoveries and interpretations of a number of Early and Middle Miocene taxa such as Kenyapithecus, Morotopithecus, Equatorius, and Nacholapithecus, the nature of the last common ancestor of extant great apes and humans is in doubt, and the relationships between most Miocene hominoids and extant forms are a matter of ongoing debate.” 6
Evolutionists’ comments, in this uncertainty, regarding the fossil discovered show that there is no agreement even among themselves as to its place in so-called evolution.
For example, the University of Toronto palaeoanthropologist David Begun says, based on the fossil’s facial features: “I”d put it closer to humans than they would, which makes it even more interesting in some ways.” David Pilbeam, from Harvard University, reports his opinion that the new skeleton is more “primitive” in so-called evolution:
“I didn”t think the face looked particularly like any living ape. I”m agnostic about the idea that it is part of the group that gave rise to extant apes.” 8
These words by Steven Ward, a palaeoanthropologist at the Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine, summarise this fossil’s lack of contribution to great ape evolutionary scenario:
“But the true phylogeny of the great apes is still open to question and will probably not be resolved by this wonderful specimen.” 9
Ntvmsnbc.com’s “missing link” propaganda regarding this fossil is groundless. Both great apes and human beings appear suddenly in the fossil record, with no evolutionary progenitors. The explanation for this is, of course, creation. Allah created human beings and apes separately.
Note: This article also constitutes our response to the following evolution reports:
“The Missing Link’s Bones,” daily Hürriyet, 20 November 2004
“Evolution’s Missing Link,” daily Milliyet, 20 November 2004
1. Moyà-Solà et al, Pierolapithecus catalaunicus, “A New Middle Miocene Great Ape from Spain,” Science, Vol. 306, Issue 5700, 1339-1344 , 19 November 2004
2. Niles Eldredge, Ian Tattersall, The Myths of Human Evolution, pp. 126-127
3. Henry Gee, “Face of Yesterday: Henry Gee on the dramatic discovery of a seven-million-year-old hominid”, The Guardian, 11 July 2002
4. Diedtra Henderson, “Ancient Animal Could Be Human-Ape Ancestor,” The Centre Daily Times, 18 November 2004; http://www.centredaily.com/mld/centredaily/news/nation/10215623.htm
5. Paul Rincon, “‘Original” great ape discovered,” BBC News, 18 November 2004; http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/4014351.stm
6. Moyà-Solà et al, ibid
7. Elizabeth Culotta, “Spanish Fossil Sheds New Light on the Oldest Great Apes,” Science, Vol. 306, Issue 5700, 1273-1274, 19 November 2004; http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/sci;306/5700/1273a
8. Elizabeth Culotta, ibid
9. Elizabeth Culotta, ibid