Re: Stasis in the fossil record.

Glenn Morton (
Mon, 24 Nov 1997 22:36:52 -0600

Hi Bill,

Now that I have finished the book I will have more time for stuff like this.

At 09:47 PM 11/24/97 -0600, wrote:

>I can envision three possible explanations:
> 1) The angiosperms evolved slowly over some period of time, as Glenn
>says that the evolutionists believe,
> 2) The angiosperms were created by divine fiat in the late Cretaceous,
>as I think Burgy indicated he prefers (Progressive Creation), or
> 3) The angiosperms were created by God during the third day of
>creation (the YEC view, and the one I personally feel most comfortable
>I would say view 2) is most concordant with the data as Glenn described
>it. If 1) is true, then there should be evidence of transitional forms
>between angiosperms and whatever they evolved from. Do we see
>transitional fossils leading up to angiosperms? If not, how is this
>abrupt appearance explained within the evolution scenario?

First, ther appearance of angiosperms may not be as abrupt as is often
represented and they might not have been 'created' when anti-evolutionists
say. Consider this from the Triassic which is about 70 million years earlier
than the lower Cretaceous.

"Bennettitales, which could represent early members of
anthophyte radiation, are well represented by articulated fronds
and leaf fragments. The referral of Pannaulika, previously
described from the quarry, to the angiosperms is potentially even
more significant. Although there is cause for some scepticism
regarding this determination, the looping tertiary venation
pattern is certainly angiosperm-like. Although the
dipteridaceous fern Dictyophyllum also exhibits a somewhat
angiosperm-like venation, it is quite unlike that of
Pannaulika."~Nicholas C. Fraser et al, "A Triassic Lagerstatte
from eastern North America," Nature, 380, April 18, 1996, p. 617

And remember that even in the lower Cretaceous, angiosperms were not a large
percentage of the flora. They didn't really take over until the late

Also there ARE examples of missing links between angiosperms and their

Jurassic missing link between seed ferns and angiosperms found in
Cayton Bay, Yorkshire England
"The angiosperms or flowering plants are characterized by having
their seeds completely enclosed in an ovary or seed pod. And,
when a flower is pollinated, the pollen grains germinate on the
stigma and send down a long pollen tube, which brings about
fertilization by discharging a male sex cell that unites with the
egg contained within the ovule that eventually grows into a
mature seed.
Now the crucial problem in the case of the Cayton Bay seed
pods (Caytonia) was whether or not the seeds were entirely
enclosed. In most of the ones that have been studied, pollen
grains were not found inside but only on the lip-actually open a
trifle, forcing us to look upon Caytonia as a gymnosperm.
However, this in no way detracts from its interest as a "missing
link", for it quite clearly had almost attained the angiosperm
stage." p. 134-135
"Measuring only a little more than 1/8 of an inch in diameter,
the fruits in question were attached by short stalks to a central
branch. Individually, the fruits are curved in such a way that
the minute opening lies close against the stalk."~Henry N.
Andrews, Jr., Ancient Plants, (Ithaca: Comstock Publishing
Associates, 1947), p. 134

The angiosperms also might not have been as dominant as has beeen thought.
A volcanic ash preserved the plant cover in Wyoming in the Upper Cretaceous,
when Angiosperms were supposed to have taken over. Yet, the angiosperms
were a minority of the preserved plants. Wing et al write:

"The rapid radiation of angiosperms during the Late Cretaceous
has been thought to be reflected their rise to vegetational
dominance. The number of species in a clade and its vegetational
importance are not necessarily related, however. Quantitative
studies of the recently discovered Big Cedar Ridge flora, found
preserved in situ in a mid-Maastrichtian volcanic ash in central
Wyoming, USA, reveal that dicotyledonous angiosperms accounted
for 61% of the species but constituted just 12% of vegetational
cover.. . .By contrast, free-sporing plants were 19% of the
species but 49% of the cover. The only abundant and ubiquitous
angiosperm was a single species of palm (about 25% of
cover).~Scott L. Wing, Leo J. Hickey and Carl C. Swisher,
"Implications of an Exceptional Fossil Flora for Late Cretaceous
Vegetation," Nature, 363, May 27, 1993.

Some of this data needs to be taken into account in your possibilities above.


Adam, Apes, and Anthropology: Finding the Soul of Fossil Man


Foundation, Fall and Flood