Transitional Fossil Announced

According to a story published in today’s New York Times, scientists have discovered a “missing link” between fish and land mammals. The transitional fossils are “so clearly an intermediate ‘link between fishes and land vertebrates,’ they said, that it
‘might in time become as much an evolutionary icon as the proto-bird Archaeopteryx,’ which bridged the gap between reptiles (probably dinosaurs) and today’s birds.” Since creationists have made it a central point to argue that no such transitional fossils exist, this is definitely a blow to their argument.

Of course, I’ve always thought that any young-earth creationist who drives a car ought to be ashamed of his own ignorance. How do they suppose that geologists figure out exactly where to look for oil? Do they just start drilling any old place and hope they get lucky? Of course not. Geologists have such high probabilities of finding oil because they exploit their knowledge of platetectonics, evolution, and the millions of years it took for the earth to turn megatons of plankton into petroleum.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/18018964956914813590 Einzige

    But where are the missing links between this new intermediate link and the fish and mammals?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12459891984373393444 Taner Edis

    For some pictures, see Troll Art.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/01458274486739212354 Leandro

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/01458274486739212354 Leandro

    Poor creationists;
    Stuck in their dungeon of ignorance
    Locked away by their fear,
    powered by their inability to accept that
    life ends at our last breath.

    - Leandro

    ThinkLeandro.com

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15223566413016415860 Rhology

    Leandro,
    Was that poetry? It was great.

    Secular Outpost,
    It seems that you are unaware that Archaeopteryx is widely recognised (yes, among evolutionary scientists) as no transitional form at all but rather as a dead end in their proposed evolutionary chains. You might want to find a better parallel example for this no doubt mind-blowing new find.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00107817973958636122 Grant

    Rhology: At the risk of nitpicking, let me point out the difference between a transitional form and a transitional species. I presume you’re talking about the fact that Archaeopteryx is too late to be an actual ancestor of modern birds, especially since the discovery of Protoavis. This is true, but its form is transitional. At worst Archaeopteryx is the descendant of, and displays features of, some species that actually was transitional between dinosaurs and birds. Or, as Chris Nedin put it at talkorigins, “no one is claiming that Archae[opteryx] is the transitional species between dinosaurs and birds, merely that Archae represents a grade of organisation which the proposed lineage went through to get from dinosaurs to birds.”

    To pick another nit: the connection between Tiktaalik and Archaeopteryx was drawn not by anyone at Secular Outpost, but by an article appearing in Nature that was quoted in the NY Times article that broke the story, and also by another paleontologist quoted by the Times. Apparently these people didn’t get the memo saying that Archaeopteryx is now useless.


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