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David Catchpoole, B.Ag.Sc. (Hons), Ph.D.

Creationist plant physiologist (CMI–Australia)

Tribute to David

Former CMI speaker/scientist/writer Dr David Catchpoole was ’promoted to glory’ on 4 July 2022. This was shortly after an extensive interview with him appeared in the July edition of Creation magazine. We are pleased to bring forward the web release of this article now, as a tribute to his life, his relationship with the Lord, and his faithful service. David leaves behind his wife, Esther, their four children, and five grandchildren. Those who know him will have good memories of him. We expect you will be inspired by David’s story.


Dr David Catchpoole received his B.Ag.Sc. (Hons) from the University of Adelaide and a Ph.D. from the University of New England (New South Wales). His Ph.D. investigated nitrogen transfer between tree legumes, associated grass and ruminant animals (goats). This was undertaken in Indonesia as part of a joint Australia-Indonesia project in forage research, aimed at improving the quality and availability of animal feed.

Dr Catchpoole subsequently worked for the Queensland Department of Primary Industries as a plant physiologist. His research focused primarily on plant nutrition of tropical fruit trees (especially mango), and varietal selection. He has also worked as a science educator at James Cook University, which included lecturing in tropical horticulture.

David was once an ardent atheistic evolutionist, before being challenged to look critically at the problems of evolution, and the scientific evidence for creation and the Bible.

He went on to work full-time for Creation Ministries International (CMI) in Brisbane, Australia, for over 15 years, serving on the editorial panel of Creation magazine, and was a popular speaker, until his retirement in 2014. He has co-authored The Creation Answers Book and Evolution’s Achilles Heels, and contributed to the book, The Big Argument. David has also contributed many articles for Creation magazine and CMI’s popular website, creation.com.

See also this article about Dr Catchpoole: From lampooning ‘loonies’ to shouting ‘creation!’: Former atheist scientist tours USA.


  • B.Ag.Sc. (Hons) [University of Adelaide, South Australia]—Honours thesis title: The effects of applied nitrate on nitrogen fixation by subterranean clover (1982)
  • Ph.D. [University of New England, New South Wales, Australia]—Thesis title: The contribution of tree legumes to the nitrogen economy and forage production in the humid tropics (1988)



Refereed articles arising from Ph.D. and Honours research projects published in secular Science publications:

  • Catchpoole, D.W. and Blair, G.J. (1990). Forage tree legumes.; I. Productivity and N economy of Leucaena, Gliricidia, Calliandra and Sesbania and tree/green panic mixtures. sAustralian Journal of Agricultural Research 41(3):521–530.
  • Catchpoole, D.W. and Blair, G.J. (1990). Forage tree legumes. II. Investigation of nitrogen transfer to an associated grass using a split-root technique.s Australian Journal of Agricultural Research 41(3):531–537.
  • Catchpoole, D.W. and Blair, G.J. (1990). Forage tree legumes. III. Release of nitrogen from leaf, faeces and urine derived from Leucaena and Gliricidia leaf.s Australian Journal of Agricultural Research 41(3):539–547.
  • Blair, G., Catchpoole, D. and Horne, P. (1990). Forage tree legumes: their management and contribution to the nitrogen economy of wet and humid tropical environments. Advances in Agronomy 44:27–54.
  • Silsbury, J.H., Catchpoole, D.W. and Wallace, W. (1986). Effects of Nitrate and Ammonium on Nitrogenase (C2H2 Reduction) Activity of Swards of Subterranean Clover, Trifolium subterraneum L. Australian Journal of Plant Physiology 13(2):257–273.
  • Silsbury, J.H. and Catchpoole, D.W. (1984). Effects of (NO3-) on N2-fixation by Trifolium subterraneum. In Veeger, C. and Newton, W.E., eds, Advances in Nitrogen Fixation Research. Martinus Nijhoff, The Hague, pp. 544.)

Articles published in Creation magazine, Journal of Creation and on this website:

Creation vs Evolution—overview

Debating the issue

CMI visits churches …

Genetics and genomic decay

Morals decline


Trouble for the ‘evolution of flight’ story

Natural selection, mutations, adaptation, etc.

Herbivorous/gentle ‘carnivores’

Carnivorous ‘herbivores’ and other brutality

Other religions

No compromise! (e.g. No death before sin)

In six days? Really!

Evangelism and being ready to answer (1 Peter 3:15)

Animals fit a biblical worldview

Design in the human body

Design in creatures

Design in plants

Other design articles


Well-preserved fossil evidence for the Flood

Living fossils

Rapid rocks

Modern examples of rapid geology/erosion and ecology


Darwin and Darwiniana

Dawkins and Dawkinsiana

Dinosaurs (and watery giants)

Rebutting evolutionary and long-age propaganda

Anti-creation censorship

Clever ancient man

Paleo-anthropology and anthropology

Clever non-primates


Origin of life

The biblical ‘kind’, and speciation

Interviewing other biblical creationists


When I was an atheist

Equipping the saints

A story for today

Helpful Resources