Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Birds did not evolve from Dinosaurs

Here I go with another non-Arkansas specific story. It is just so hard for me, as a former science guy, to see this hidden revolution in the data go unmentioned by the media. While pop culture keeps pushing the idea that birds evolved from dinosaurs, the evidence continues to pile up that birds were around so long ago that one wonders if the reverse is more probable- certain types of dinosaurs "evolved" from birds. That is, if either derived from the other at all.

I used parenthesis around "evolved" because from birds to some dinos who look like birds which have lost powers of flight represents a loss of function. While losing function and complexity may be considered "evolution" on some level, a better word for that might be "devolution" because you can't get from molecules to man by losing complexity. There are a lot of folks who see loss of complexity and just assume it also goes the other way. I am not convinced.
Anyway, here is an article where they are surprised to find that the soft tissue and muscle attachments of a 125 million year old bird look like those of modern birds. The skeletal features were not quite like those of modern birds- most modern birds have lost their teeth for example, but these were definitely birds. That was smack-dab in the middle of the age of dinosaurs- and it wasn't the earliest critter that looks very "birdy". It is really difficult to say at this point if the feather-covered bird looking but ground dwelling dinosaurs came first or if what are essentially birds came first with the ground-dwelling versions coming later, or even both at the same time.
UPDATE: OK are "scientists" really this ignorant about their own field or are they deliberately misleading us? Here is another story where a bird-like dinosaur has flight feathers and uses them as an ostrich uses them, for thermal regulation. The scientists gushes that flight feathers must have evolved before flight because of what he found on this 66 to 100 million year old fossil of an ostrich like dinosaur. Of course I just linked above to a 125 million year old fossil of a bird with flight feathers that could fly. 


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