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This article is from
Creation 29(3):27, June 2007

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Birds: fliers from the beginning


Evolutionists claim that Archaeopteryx is an intermediate between reptiles and birds. One problem is that ‘Archie’ and even the beaked bird Confuciusornis are ‘dated’, even by the evolutionists’ own methods, as millions of years older than their alleged dinosaur ancestors! But it’s clear that Archie had fully formed bird features. For example, it had a perching foot.1 This means that its wings would have needed to be advanced enough to produce the special wing turbulences (leading edge vortices) that those of modern birds form, so that it could land.2 Indeed, it also had:

  • Classical elliptical wings like modern woodland birds.1
  • Fully-formed flying feathers (including asymmetric vanes and ventral, reinforcing furrows as in modern flying birds).1
  • A large wishbone for attachment of strong muscles responsible for the downstroke of the wings.
  • The same unique avian lung design with air sacs and one-directional airflow,3 totally different from the bellows-like lungs of a reptile.4
  • These features show it [Archaeopteryx] was a true bird—neither a missing link nor a forgery
  • A brain like a modern bird’s, three times the size of that of a dinosaur of equivalent size. The brain even had large optic lobes to process the visual input needed for flying.5
  • An inner ear with a cochlear length and semicircular canal proportions in the range of a modern flying bird’s. This implies that Archaeopteryx could hear in a similar way, and also had the sense of balance required for coordinating flight.5

Note also, these obvious avian features are totally incompatible with the idea that Archaeopteryx was a forgery, i.e. that it was just a dinosaur fossil with fake feather imprints. These features show it was a true bird—neither a missing link nor a forgery.6

Posted on homepage: 8 May 2007


  1. Feduccia, A., Evidence from claw geometry indicating arboreal habits of Archaeopteryx, Science 259(5096):790–793, 5 Feb. 1993. Return to text.
  2. Sarfati, J., Fancy flying from advanced aeronautics: The design of swifts and jet fighters, Creation 29(1):37–39, 2006; after Videler, J.J., Stamhuis, E.J. and Povel, G.D.E., Leading-edge vortex lifts swifts, Science 306(5703):1960–1962, 10 December 2004. Return to text.
  3. Christiansen, P. and Bonde, N., Axial and appendicular pneumaticity in Archaeopteryx, Proceedings of the Royal Society of London, Series B. 267:2501–2505, 2000. Return to text.
  4. Blown away by design: Michael Denton and birds’ lungs, Creation 21(4):14–15, 1999. Return to text.
  5. Alonso, P.D., Milner, A.C., Ketcham, R.A., Cookson, M.J and Rowe, T.B., The avian nature of the brain and inner ear of Archaeopteryx, Nature 430(7000):666–669, 5 August 2004; Witmer, L.M, Inside the oldest bird brain, perspective, same issue, pp. 619–620. Return to text.
  6. Sarfati, J., Archaeopteryx (unlike Archaeoraptor) is NOT a hoax—it is a true bird, not a ‘missing link’, 2000–2004. Return to text.

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