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A recent article from the UK’s Daily Mail declared, “Swallows are evolving shorter wings because they keep getting hit by traffic.” Now, the article explains the results of a recent study from the journal Current Biology. The study examined cliff swallows, both living and dead, that build their mud nests on highway overpasses, to see if there were certain traits in swallows that favored their survival. The researchers argued that natural selection should “favor individuals that either learn to avoid cars or that have other traits making them less likely to collide with vehicles.” The study found that the swallows that survived had shorter wingspans, while the ones that died had longer wings.
The study mentioned nothing about evolution—and yet the article from the Daily Mail (typical of the secular media that is out to push its atheistic agenda and brainwash the public) indicated that the study has everything to do with evolution. The article even quotes an American evolutionary scientist about the results:
The findings are an example of how urban environments can become evolutionary hotspots, according to lead scientist Dr. Charles Brown, from the University of Tulsa in Oklahoma. “Evolution is an ongoing process, and all this—roads, SUVs, and all—is part of nature or ‘the wild’; they exert selection pressures in a way we don’t usually think about,” he said.But what these researchers observed happening to the swallows doesn’t have anything to do with molecules-to-man evolution! The swallows didn’t change into another kind of animal—they’re all still swallows. No new information was added to the genes of the swallows. Swallows grow wings—some shorter, some longer—but they are still wings on swallows!
What this study shows us is the potential for variation in length of wings that exists in the swallows’ DNA. The genetic information for shorter wings was already present. Nothing about this study in any way gives support to evolutionary ideas, despite what some news sources falsely claim. Basically, one could say that those swallows with shorter wings survived better than those with longer wings—so the shorter-winged birds prevailed in this population. And this is supposedly great evidence for evolution? Wow—does that convince you?
Now, if a reptile that doesn’t have the information for wings was somehow able to develop this new information in their genes so they could grow feathers and produce wings—that would be an example to support molecules-to-man evolution. But of course, one never sees (and never will see) such an example.
So when God created the great sea creatures and the winged birds on Day Five of Creation Week, He built in the genetic variety these creatures would need to live in this world. And they were all created “according to their kind” (Genesis 1:21)—meaning they would never change from one animal kind to another. However, there is great variation within each kind reflecting the creativity of our all-powerful God.
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Answers in Genesis is an apologetics ministry, dedicated to helping Christians defend their faith and proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ effectively. We focus on providing answers to questions about the Bible—particularly the book of Genesis—regarding key issues such as creation, evolution, science, and the age of the earth.