“Flue” Whales Confirm the Bible’s Teaching

by Ken Ham on February 15, 2024
Featured in Ken Ham Blog

What is a “flue” whale? Well, it’s a hybrid of a fin whale and the more well-known titan, the North Atlantic blue whale. Both of these oceanic giants are baleen whales (named for the comb-like structures they use to filter plankton from the water), and their offspring confirm what we’d expect starting with Genesis.

A new study of blue whale DNA found that around 3.5% of a blue whale’s genome is actually the result of interbreeding with fin whales. Furthermore, it turns out the resulting “flues” are fertile and are producing further hybridized offspring. While these whale hybrids have been known for a long time, this new study revealed the “true scale” of the hybridization, and it was much greater than was assumed.

Now, in the evolutionary worldview this interbreeding is surprising. Consider this statement from the popular science article reporting on the study:

As the study notes, this is fairly remarkable since the pair diverged from each other on the evolutionary family tree around 8.35 million years ago.

After 8 million years, it would make sense from an evolutionary perspective that these whales would be so different that they would no longer be able to produce offspring with one another, and yet it appears they do that quite frequently. These hybrids are an evolutionary puzzle, defying their definitions of and expectations for species.

But are “flues” a surprise in a biblical worldview? Not at all. Blue and fin whales are part of the same created kind (likely the rorqual kind, the family Balaenopteridae), created on day five of creation week. This kind has been adapting and forming new species (reflecting the genetic diversity in their DNA God created) within a kind (such as blue and fin whales) for only about six thousand years, with an increase in adaptation likely occurring after the flood, when earth’s climate and ecosystems underwent radical changes.

We believe that God created each kind with a tremendous amount of genetic variation to allow them to adapt to an ever-changing world.

Does this mean creationists believe in evolution? After all, adaptation and speciation are words usually considered synonymous with evolution. Not at all. You see, we believe that God created each kind with a tremendous amount of genetic variation to allow them to adapt to an ever-changing world. But the kind (usually falling around the family level of classification) is the boundary—one kind will never change into a totally different kind. We do expect variety within a kind (such as the rorqual kind). And this changing within a kind is exactly what is observed.

Evolutionists, however, believe one kind changed into a totally different kind (i.e., a small land mammal supposedly evolved back into the ocean to become a whale). This change of kind requires the addition of brand-new, functioning genetic information to code for new forms and features. That has never been observed! We don’t observe one kind changing into another kind, and we don’t observe new genetic information forming.

“Flue” whales and other hybrids are a puzzle for the evolutionary worldview, but they are a confirmation of the history in God’s Word. To learn more about this topic, I encourage you to read this recent Answers in Depth article from AiG’s Harry Sanders: “Where Do All the Species Come From?

Get More Answers on Answers News

This item was discussed yesterday on Answers News with cohosts Dr. Georgia Purdom, Roger Patterson, and Bryan Osborne. Answers News is our weekly news program filmed live before a studio audience here at the Creation Museum, broadcast on our Answers in Genesis YouTube channel, and posted to Answers TV. We also covered the following topics:

  • Transgender “care” pioneer says we’re rushing kids to transition.
  • Is there a lack of evidence for gender transitions?
  • A 380-million-year-old air-breathing fish?
  • And more!

Watch the entire episode of Answers News for February 14, 2024.

Be sure to join us each Wednesday at 2 p.m. (ET) on YouTube or later that day on Answers TV for Answers News. You won’t want to miss this unique news program that gives science and culture news from a distinctly biblical and Christian perspective.

Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,

This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.

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