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Creation 35(2):32–33, April 2013

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Amazing preservation: Three birds in a dinosaur!

Did dinos give rise to birds? No—they ate them



A fossil of the small theropod dinosaur Sinocalliopteryx gigas found in Liaoning, China, was so well preserved that researchers were able to make out its intact stomach contents.1 They were able to see the last thing it had eaten—a bird dinner. As the bird had only been partially digested (indicating death of the Sinocalliopteryx had occurred not long after its last meal) the researchers were even able to identify the species of the bird: Confuciusornis sanctus.

What’s more, that bird specimen was not the only one found in the dinosaur’s stomach. There was another Confuciusornis sanctus carcass as well, and “both were in a similar state of partial digestion”.1 Given that “remains as delicate as small bird bones have presumably short digestion periods”, the researchers conclude, logically enough, that the two Confuciusornis birds must have been consumed in fairly rapid succession, “in order for the first individual not to have had time to be digested noticeably beyond that of the second.”1


Evidently the dinosaur liked eating birds, because there were the remains of a third bird in its stomach too, in a somewhat more advanced state of digestion, which the researchers say might also have been a Confuciusornis. Paleontologist Scott Persons mused, “The fact that this Sinocalliopteryx had not one but three undigested birds in its stomach indicates it was a voracious eater and a very active hunter.”2

How did this fossil, and many other fossils at Liaoning similarly “exquisitely preserved”,3 with even “abdominal contents in exquisite detail” being preserved,4 come to be this way? The secular uniformitarian models, based on the idea that ‘the present is the key to the past’, really don’t even begin to make sense of the fossils even just at Liaoning, let alone globally. Rather, knowing what really happened in the past is the key to understanding the present world—including fossils. The Bible tells us of a global catastrophic event, the Flood of Noah’s day, about 4,500 years ago. This is why we find billions of fossils in sedimentary rock worldwide.


This correct understanding utterly washes away the millions of years so needed by the evolutionary paradigm. Textbooks, museums, and television documentaries promoting that paradigm have said that over millions of years dinosaurs gave rise to birds, which in turn evolved the ability to fly. But the Confuciusornis birds in the dinosaur’s stomach were birds “capable of powered flight”,1 and also had a beak rather than teeth. And as this is not the first dinosaur discovered with bird remains in its belly,5 where does that leave the millions-of-years dino-to-bird scenario? No wonder that evolutionists are “in a flap”.6

Posted on homepage: 21 June 2014

References and notes

  1. Xing, L., Bell, P., Persons, W., Ji, S., Miyashita, T., et al., abdominal contents from two large early Cretaceous compsognathids (Dinosauria: Theropoda) demonstate feeding on confuciusornithids and dromaeosaurids, PLoS ONE 7(8): e44012. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0044012, 29 August 2012. Return to text.
  2. Dinosaur ‘ate slow-flying birds’, Press Association, uk.news.yahoo.com, 29 August 2012. Return to text.
  3. The words “exquisitely preserved” have been used by evolutionists to describe a great many of the fossils unearthed at Liaoning. E.g. a fossilized pterosaur embryo “enjoying its last few days in its egg”—Wang, X. and Zhou, Z., Pterosaur embryo from the Early Cretaceous, Nature 429(6992):621, 2004; which we reported on in Creation 27(2):35, 2005; Tiny pterosaur’s untimely end. Return to text.
  4. The exact wording used in the Introduction in Ref. 1. Return to text.
  5. O’Connor, J., Zhou, Z. and Xu, X., Additional specimen of Microraptor provides unique evidence of dinosaurs preying on birds, PNAS, pnas.org/content/early/2011/11/17/1117727108.full.pdf+html, 21 November 2011. Return to text.
  6. Thornhill, T., First proof of bird-eating dinosaur has scientists in a flap, www.dailymail.co.uk, 23 November 2011. Return to text.

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