[asa] Flood Geology's Abominable Mystery

From: Duff,Robert Joel <rjduff@uakron.edu>
Date: Thu Dec 21 2006 - 13:24:47 EST

Flipping through the most recent issue of Nature I found an article
about the various microbes that have been identified in 220
million-year-old amber from the southern alps. This article along with
another published this year by the same group: "Triassic Amber of the
Southern Alps" in Palaios (21:143-154) reminded me of how striking the
distribution of fossils is in the fossil record. In particular what is
striking is the types of pollen and other microorganismal remains in
these amber droplets. All of the pollen (many thousands of pollen
grains in hundreds of amber droplets) found is of Conifers with many
spores of ferns and lycophytes the later of which are an uncommon group
today. There is absolutely no evidence of pollen from angiosperms
(flowering plants) in any of this amber.


This lack of angiosperm pollen I should think would be absolutely
mind-boggling to any flood geologist. Over the years members of this
list have spent much time exposing the problems with thick chalk
deposits, clays, salt deposits etc.. as problems for flood geology. The
segregation of cocoliths and other micro-organisms in the fossil record
has also been made abundantly clear. While these may be clear examples
to those who are familiar with the fossil record the enormity of the
problems are difficult to communicate to the lay Christian. I
personally find the lack of angiosperm pollen in the bottom two thirds
of the fossil record to be one of the most dramatic and obvious problems
and believe it may be an easier issue for some to grasp. I like to call
it Flood Geologies Abominable Mystery. Clearly the Scriptures suggest
that seeded plants existed prior to the Noaic flood and thus it seems
reasonable to assume that angiosperm type pollen and angiosperms in
general existed prior to the Flood. Today, angiosperm pollen can be
found ubiquitously on the face of the earth. In fact it would be nearly
impossible to find any soil that does not have angiosperm pollen in it.
While there is a fair amount of conifer pollen from pines even in a pine
forest one will not find pine pollen in exclusion of angiosperm pollen.
Furthermore, it should be noted that angiosperm pollen is quite distinct
from Gymnosperm pollen (For a nice overview of angiosperm pollen and
theories of angiosperm origins please see:


Simply put, most people recognize that the vast majority of plants they
see are flowering plants and these plants all produce pollen to some
extent. Pollen is quite readily preserved in sediments and thus the
fossil record hence the young earth creationist's prediction would be
that flowering plant pollen should be found throughout the entire
geological column (even possible in part of the column which were formed
prior to death being introduced into the world!). However, this is
clearly not the case and these amber pieces are just one of thousands of
examples of evidence that flowering plant pollen is restricted to only
the upper parts of the fossils record. How could sap have fallen from a
tree, or even been on a tree, and have collected thousands of conifer
pollen grains and fern spores but not have had a single flowering plant
pollen grain get trapped in them? There are hundreds of other example of
similar distinct distributions of fossils in the fossil record but I
have always found this example of flowering plant distribution to one of
the most dramatic and accessible to those that may not understand much
about geology.


One YEC member's acknowledgement of fossil succession:

In 2002, in a debate between Baumgardner and Oard over Catastrophic
Plate Tectonics versus Vertical Tectonics, Baumgardner made one of the
strongest admission of the reality of the fossil record that I have seen
by any member of the YEC community. Oard tends to deny aspects of
fossils succession and in this reply by Baumgarder quoted below,
Baumgarder summarizes the 'facts" that must be accommodated by any YEC
model. To date, none of the models, including his, can account for
these facts.


Quote from Baumgarder (TJ 16(1):78-81 April 2002, "A Constructive Quest
for Truth")

"As a final point, I would like to address Michael Oard's general
rejection of the concept of fossil succession in the geological record.
Fossil succession represents an undeniable reality of what creationists
and evolutionists alike observe in the rock strata. For example, we find
no archaeocyathids, a vase-shaped coral-like organism with a
double-walled calcareous skeleton, above middle Cambrian strata. We find
no pentamerus brachiopods or cystoid crinozoans or psilopsid plants
above Devonian strata, no graptolites above Mississippian strata, and no
trilobites or rugose corals above Permian strata. On the other hand, we
find no birds or angiosperms in strata lower than Jurassic, no mammals
in strata lower than upper Triassic, no reptiles in strata lower than
Pennsylvanian, and no amphibians in strata lower than Devonian. A
similar unmistakable sequence of types also exists in the case of the

One can personally examine the actual physical sequence of rock strata
with their fossils, starting, for example, at the bottom of Grand Canyon
and continuing up onto the Colorado Plateau at Bryce Canyon. Independent
of the names and geological periods that have been assigned to them,
these rock units indeed have genuine identity, can readily be tracked
laterally for hundreds of miles, and display an unambiguous vertical
fossil sequence for anyone who cares to look. Creation tours actually
provide this opportunity on a frequent basis. Oard cannot provide a
rational defence for his denial of such observable reality. Creationists
have long recognized this ordering in the fossil record and have related
it to the progressive destruction of ecological habitat as the
transgressing waters of the Genesis Flood reached higher and higher
topographical regions of the planet. Oard in his mind seems to be
equating fossil succession to evolution, not understanding that
evolution is merely the interpretation evolutionists are imposing on the
observed data. If we as creationists are to make genuine progress in
reconstructing the actual history of the Earth in light of God's
revelation, we simply cannot afford such denial and misrepresentation of
crucially important information."



Dr. R. Joel Duff

Associate Professor of Biology

185 ASEC, Department of Biology

University of Akron

Akron OH 44325-3908




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Received on Thu Dec 21 13:25:02 2006

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