The idea the public has of dinosaurs is that they were real, but a massive asteroid struck the earth 65 million years ago and killed them all off. A person who devoted considerable time, money and effort to find out the truth about this hypothesis is Dr Carl Werner and his wife, Debbie. In their book 'Living Fossils' (New Leaf Press, 2008), they share their discoveries. During his first year at college, he was challenged by one of his friends to prove evolution. He summarized his discoveries in his first book, 'Evolution, the Grand Experiment (New Leaf Press, 2007). As a medical doctor he had the necessary training to evaluate the hypothesis of evolution. He summarized the teaching of evolution as follows:
- Animals and plants changed dramatically over time from one type into a completely different type, through random mutations. In this ever-changing line of animals and plants over millions of years, due to the principle of survival of the fittest, the weaker predecessors became extinct.
To test whether evolution is true and really happened, he took the opposite stance and predicted:
- If evolution was not true, then animals and plants have not changed significantly over time. The proof for this would be demonstrated by the fossil record. He should find fossils that look the same or nearly the same as modern animals in the 'older' fossil layers (p 10).
To make this vast search easier and more manageable (it took him 30 years in any case), he decided to concentrate on only the rock layers associated with dinosaurs, namely the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous. Since he didn't know of any 'living' fossils [fossils that look very similar to modern plants or animals], he thought his experiment was destined for failure.
The generally accepted idea that an asteroid killed the dinosaurs, was opposed by Dr William Clemens. He said that the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs should also have killed the butterflies, bees, frogs, salamanders and others plants and animals living with the dinosaurs (p 14). This was a reasonable conclusion, and Dr Werner set out to find whether others animals and insects lived at the same time as dinosaurs. (To understand his discoveries, we should remember the difference between a kind [type], a species and a breed. For example the wolf kind is divided into various species like wolves, dogs, jackals, dingos, coyotes. The dog species has many different breeds. Members of a kind can interbreed, but one kind has never been seen to change into another kind.)
Dr Werner discovered a long list of animals and plants in the same rock layers as dinosaurs. Many looked very similar to those living today, but they had been given different names than their living counterparts. Was it because paleontologists wanted to be remembered for new fossil finds? So that no one could doubt his discoveries, Werner includes photos of each fossil and its living 'fossil.' The following is a list of living fossils (modern organisms) in dinosaur rock layers:
- Echinoderms like brittle stars, sea cucumbers, sea urchins and sea lilies (p 29-44).
- Aquatic arthropods like shrimp, lobsters, prawns, crayfish and crabs (p 45-56).
- Land arthropods like insects, spiders, scorpions, millipedes and centipedes (p 57-70).
- Bivalve shellfish like scallops, oysters, clams, mussels and other types of shellfish (p 71-88).
- Segmented worms, sponges and corals (p 89-98).
- Bony fish like sturgeon, coelacanth, salmon, lungfish and gars (p 99-108).
- Other sea creatures like eel, flounder, scad and herring (p 109-116).
- Cartilaginous fish like sharks and rays (p 117-124).
- Jawless fish like lampreys and hagfish (p 125-128).
- Amphibians like frogs and salamanders (p 129-136).
- Reptiles like alligators, crocodiles and gavials (p 130-142).
- Snakes, lizards and turtles (p 143-160).
- Birds like flamingos, cormorants, sandpipers, penguins, owls and ducks (p 161-168).
- Mammals like the placentals, marsupials and egg laying monotremes like hedgehogs, platypus and shrews (p 169-182).
- Plants like the cone trees, palm-like cycads and gingko trees (p 183-240).
He found, ignoring the genus and species names, that many fossils in dinosaur rock layers very closely resemble organisms living today. His conclusion is that animals and plants have not significantly changed (evolved) over time, but some animals and plants have simply gone extinct (p 241). The implication is obvious: a false picture is painted about dinosaur extinctions, while no information is given about all the organisms that survived unchanged through the (evolutionary) millions of years. If evolution was true, these organisms that lived at the same time as dinosaurs should have adapted and evolved into new types (or kinds). They didn't change and evolve. '[Modern scientists] know this kind of adaptation is genetically impossible since there is no mechanism for an animal to sense a change in the environment using the body's skin cells, or nerve cells, and then pass this information to the DNA in the reproductive process' (p 241).