We watched a show on the Discover channel last night dealing with the large dinosaur graveyard in Utah that contains a large number of Falcarius utahensis bones. Of course there were the typical confident pronouncements about conditions, creatures, and events millions and millions of years ago, but the description of this creature’s evolutionary path was especially striking.
According to the experts on the show, this creature went from being a medium-size meat-eating dinosaur, to being an herbivore the size of an elephant (covered with feathers, no less). If I understood them correctly, they implied that this creature eventually turned into some species of bird. They said this with great conviction and straight faces.
Apparently, it’s perfectly normal during evolution for creatures to change size from that of a horse, to that of an elephant, to that of a chicken (or smaller). It’s also perfectly normal for creatures to go from having large serrated teeth, to smaller sharp teeth, to having no teeth whatsoever. It’s apparently also normal for a predator creature with three-foot long claws to retain those claws as it switches to a vegetarian diet, although it did grow another toe! That’s nothing, though, as its powerful front arms somehow morphed into wings. Along the way, the length ratios of the thigh-bone-to-shin-bone changed all over the place.
I couldn’t help but think of all the hoopla these days about how kids are getting so “fat.” If this dinosaur is any example, we should be glad that kids today aren’t the size of blimps, and feeding on gnats. Yet, somehow the experts of today are certain that humans should not be showing any signs of change.
It’s difficult to decide which position is more amazing.