At the Bob Dylan Concert
Vioxx, the Scientific Method, and the Atheists

Winged Migration and the Evolutionists

The bird newscaster was on the scene, microphone in Somberly, he related the details of the grisly crash. And it was grisly. Behind him you could see the downed airplane, broken and aflame. “Details are still sketchy,” he reported, “but it appears that the name of the bird sucked into the engines in Harold Kruntz.”

Such is the imagination of Gary Larsen, creator of the Far Side, who imagines the bird’s point of view.

That’s what the 2003 film Winged Migration does as well. It relates migration from the bird’s point of view. There you are, soaring shoulder to shoulder with big birds, small birds, ugly birds, pretty birds as they wing past and over fields, cities, factories, and ocean. There go the twin towers zipping past. (yep, it was filmed before 911) Does the camera stop to linger? Not for a moment; this is the bird’s point of view. Here is a frigate plying the waters, the birds land on deck. They strut to and fro, on short break from their journey. One or two catch a quick nap on the heat grates. Off yonder we hear some garbled voices on the shortwave. Do we track the source? Nope, this is the bird’s story. Off they fly and you go with them. We never see a person; do birds not care about us as much as we ourselves do?

Same story flying over the Grand Canyon and a few dozen other breathless terrains. No time to sightsee. It’s ‘keep on flying.’ Even a duck hunt is shown from the duck‘s point of view. There you are, flying with your duck buddies when there is a loud pop and one of them goes down!

“How in the world did they get that shot?” you say to yourself over and over again, as you and your birds wing around the world.

They did itwith the help of balloons, gliders, helicopters, and planes. They did it by exposing eggs of some of the birds to the sounds of people and film cameras so that the birds would be unafraid of them later. They did it with patience; French director Jacques Perrin with teams of filmmakers took three years to travel 40 countries and all seven continents, tracking birds of all types - birds on the go.

Narration is sparse, consisting mostly of terse remarks like “it is a matter of life and death.” We follow the arctic tern, a bird that migrates from the summer North Pole to the summer South Pole, and back again. At each endpoint, there are rich food sources. The narrator tells us of the never-ending search for food. You almost wish he’d say more.

Like how did that tern ever discover that such food bonanzas existed 11,000 miles apart? Does anyone have the answer? Do evolutionists? Did one tern just happen to “wander” that distance, and hit pay dirt to such an extent that all terns started doing it? What of the lazy terns that flew lesser distances? Did they all die out?

When fall arrives, Blackpoll Warblers gather on the New England coast. They've flown in from Alaska. By the sea they await the right weather conditions, a strong cold front, to begin their 2400 mile flight to South America. It finally comes and they take off, flying non-stop past Bermuda, heading straight…..for Africa! Approaching Antigua, they climb higher and higher, absurdly high, up to 21,000 feet. It's cold up there and there‘s not much oxygen. What are the stupid birds doing up there, for crying out loud?

They catch a prevailing wind that blows them to South America! Energy expended is less than if the warblers headed directly for that continent! Who’s stupid now? Can the evolutionists explain how that came about?

Come summer’s end, Manx shearwaters begin their migration from Wales. leaving behind their chicks. Once the latter can fly, they follow the adults and reunite in Brazil. One Manx shearwater was taken from Wales to Boston, (by scientists?…..did they blindfold it?) 3200 miles away. It returned to Wales in 13 days. Scientists did it to Adelie penguins, too, stranding them 1200 miles from their rookeries. Apparently unexasperated, (as I would be) they headed straight to the open sea to chow down for the trip ahead, and then returned to the rookeries.

Tom Pearlsenswine can get lost heading to the corner store.

In Origin of the Species, Charles Darwin wrote “Many instincts are so wonderful that their development will probably appear to the reader a difficulty sufficient to overthrow my whole theory.” To my knowledge, just how such instincts developed has still not been solved. Instead, it is taken off the table. Evolutionists rely on the scientific method, and the scientific method is too narrow to deal with such questions. Where are the repeatable experiments with which you can test this or that hypothesis? So they simply dismiss the whole matter as irrelevant. Thus,  when you come along to discuss the subject, you find you’re playing a board game, the rules of which are that you can’t move your pieces!

Some of Gary Larsen’s birds have reached the ultimate in evolutionary prowess, providing rich fodder for scientific research. Thus, one of his cartoons has a duck approaching in the hallway. The wife says to her husband: “Here he comes. Remember, be kind, but firm. We are not driving him south again this winter!” Evolution being what it is, the duck will no doubt talk them into it.



******  The bookstore


Defending Jehovah’s Witnesses with style from attacks... in Russia, with the book ‘I Don’t Know Why We Persecute Jehovah’s Witnesses—Searching for the Why’ (free).... and in the West, with the book, 'In the Last of the Last Days: Faith in the Age of Dysfunction'


Romulus Crowe

Dismissing the unexplainable as irrelevant is something scientists should never do - yet I've seen a lot of that in my particular field.

I really can't give any credibility to a someone calling themselves 'scientist' who then goes on to say 'I can't explain that, so I'm going to ignore it.'

Worse - 'I can't explain it so I'm going to state that it's not real, without bothering to investigate it'.

When I was undergraduate, and then postgraduate, the key word in scientific investigation was 'disinterested'. It means that the investigating scientist should, ideally, be unaffected by the results of an experiment. Whichever way it turns out, the scientist should record and report. There should be no preconception that an experiment will prove one thing or another. The scientist's beliefs must not influence the experimental design, nor the interpretation of the results.

Sadly, that concept seems to have faded from view. Experiments are now set up to prove a concept that the scientist has in mind. When you set up an experiment that way, all too often it will produce the desired result. At the very least, it will produce data that can be twisted in interpretation to produce the desired result.

But it's not science.

Ignoring the unexplainable isn't science, nor is refusing to acknowledge inconvenient data.

Yet it happens. All the time.

There might be a logical, scientific explanation for why birds migrate in the way they do, but nobody's ever going to find it by pretending it's not there.

If there is no explanation, after exhaustive research, then the possibility that they were guided by God cannot be discounted.

I've said before, I follow no religion, but I also have no grounds to deny the possibility of God. I keep my options open.

tom sheepandgoats

Thanks, Romulus. Though I like science and try to follow it as an informed layman, I'm not into it as you are. Your descriptions of its strengths and limitations are invaluable.


Evolutionists can't explain selfless altruism compared with "survival of the fittest".

Can one fight and scratch to stay the top dog but also serve others through placing their interests above one's own?

No scienctific answer.

Ed Hughes

I am sorry jklace but selfless altruism is a human trait and has nothing to do with birds or animals. Why should evolutionists try to apply human traits, as you probably do to your family pet, to species other than human. Homo Erectus very possibly had, and was developing this trait, but that is what evolution is all about. The typical bird or animal did not evolve in the direction to allow such things. We are very lucky that something evolved to be Homo Sapiens.

The comments to this entry are closed.