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Creation 41(2):41, April 2019

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New dinosaur Lingwulong shenqi

Diplodocoid dino: Wrong evolutionary place and time



A team of English and Chinese paleontologists have discovered a new type of dinosaur in Língwǔ, Níngxià Huí Autonomous Region (NHAR), northwest China.1

They named it Lingwulong shenqi = ‘amazing dragon of Lingwu’ (from shénqí 神奇 = amazing, magical and lóng 龙 = dragon), based on found fossil material from 7–10 skeletons, aged from juvenile to adult. The lead author, Dr Xú Xīng (徐星, b. 1969), has named more dinosaurs than any other paleontologist alive.

This new discovery is a type of sauropod, the dinosaur group with the long necks and tails, and which includes the hugest creatures ever to walk the land. This one was not as big as some of the others, and had a shorter neck, so was ‘only’ about 11–17 metres (35–55 feet) long.2 It was ‘dated’ to middle Jurassic, i.e. 174 million evolutionary years ago.

Wrong time

However, the discoverers were most intrigued: in evolutionary terms, it was an ‘advanced’ type of sauropod named ‘neosauropod’, i.e. ‘new sauropod’—but it was ‘dated’ millions of years before such sauropods were supposed to have evolved. Furthermore, it was classified as a diplodocoid, i.e. like Diplodocus, with many ‘derived’ (supposedly more evolved) features. Creationists would likely regard Diplodocus and Lingwulong as varieties of the diplodocoid created kind, along with Apatosaurus and Seismosaurus and some others.

The problem for evolution is, to evolve such a creature would require “that several different types of advanced sauropod must have existed at least 15 million years earlier,” according to study co-author Professor Paul Upchurch.3 However, there is no fossil trace of these creatures.

Wrong place

Still another problem was that it was discovered in the wrong place under the slow-and-gradual continental drift idea. As Dr Xu explains:

Diplodocus-like neosauropods were thought to have never made it to East Asia because this region was cut off from the rest of the world by Jurassic seaways, so that China evolved its own distinctive and separate dinosaur fauna.2

Anyone who has seen ‘Chinese dinosaur’ exhibits knows what he means by distinctive Chinese dinosaurs, such as the very-long–necked Mamenchisaurus.

Out-of-place fossils?

In his debate with creationist Ken Ham,4 evolutionist Bill Nye (who once played a ‘science guy’ on children’s TV) dogmatically claimed that there were no fossils out of place with reference to evolution. However, this is just not so—there are plenty,5 and Lingwulong is yet another. But while evolutionists such as Nye claim that out-of-place fossils would be a problem, others will merely tinker with their theory.

For example, Dr Xu says, “However, Lingwulong shows that these Diplodocus-like sauropods were present after all, and implies that the isolation of East Asia was less profound” than paleontologists had realized.2 Similarly, even if we found a living dinosaur, although they are almost certainly extinct now,6 evolutionists would tinker with their theory to cope.

So it’s always, ‘Heads, evolution wins; tails, creation loses.’

Posted on homepage: 1 April 2020

References and notes

  1. Xu Xing and seven others, A new Middle Jurassic diplodocoid suggests an earlier dispersal and diversification of sauropod dinosaurs, Nature Communications 9:2700, 24 July 2018 | doi:10.1038/s41467-018-05128-1. Return to text.
  2. Fortin, J., ‘Amazing Dragon’ discovery in China reshapes history of dinosaurs’ evolution, New York Times, 26 July 2018. Return to text.
  3. University College London, New dinosaur found in the wrong place, at the wrong time, sciencedaily.com, 1 August 2018. Return to text.
  4. Cosner, L., Gillis, S., and Halley, K., Clash over worldviews: An analysis of the Ham/Nye debate, creation.com/nye, February 2014. Return to text.
  5. Bates, G. and Cosner, L., Are there out-of-sequence fossils that are problematic for evolution? creation.com/fossilorder, 17 April 2014. Return to text.
  6. Carter, R., Sarfati, J., and Bates, G., Dinosaurs are almost certainly extinct: It is time to let go of the idea of ‘living dinosaurs’, creation.com/dinos-extinct, 22 February 2018. Return to text.