Post-flood Marsupial Migration Explained
by Robert Byers
One of the most common criticisms that creationism is hit with is that the exclusive marsupial fauna of the Australian region is great evidence against the story of the Ark and animal migration from it.
That the fact of only marsupial creatures (excepting rodents, birds, reptiles and insects) and few placental animals living in Australia makes foolish any creationist claim that all dry land animals migrated from the Ark 4500 hundred years ago. How could just the marsupial ones migrate to Australia and no other kinds of mammals like lions, wolves, rabbits, moles etc?
And this is an important matter that creationists must address because of the logic and commonality of it being brought up. And to show any community, scientific or otherwise we can give good answers to all questions based on our confidence in the Bible as the accurate account of beginnings.
And these answers can be interesting and even advance studies in biogeography and biology.
Organized creationism has bravely but only occasionally addressed this matter. And has to date not had a persuasive right answer.
A careful examination of fossil and living creatures does provide a persuasive and exciting answer that all Christians and creationists can boldly and simply assert. No longer need we be defensive but offensive on the marsupial nature of Australia. The Marsupial nature of Australia is not an anomaly but rather a revelation of the true history or equation of animal migration and adaptation after leaving the Ark. It suits creationists fine. And also another question of the fossil record is answered.
The exclusive marsupial history of Australia need not be an anomaly that of animal migration from the Biblical Ark but rather indicates a new equation needs to be introduced.
To do that I will first list the way science groups present and past mammals.
They group them according to shared body structure attributes that they believe indicate a common origin for each group. It is the inner skeleton or biological workings that they use to indicate relationships of mammals. Other then this they have no evidence. It is all interpretation of what can be observed in living and fossil mammals.
Now here is a selection of the numerous examples of similar creatures from different ancestors as evolution teaches. What will be presented is a selection of the great orders that modern evolutionary biology and paleontology teaches mammals can be divided into. These are present living creatures or only known by the fossil record. Many of these orders are now extinct as far as evolution see it. And all lived from the time of the demise of the Dinosaurs to present. That is from the Cretaceous-teritary time division as Evolutionary geology sees it. About 60 million years. As Creationism sees it this is the time from after the creatures coming off the Ark about 4500 years ago to the present. An order is a division of creatures that shows by its body evidence to have a common ancestor. In the mammal world in each case this common ancestor was an original non-descript rodent- like creature. An order is then divided up by families and then by species.
The ones we know today. These are placental mammals and in their own orders which will not be listed (except the Marsupialla order as defined).
All present bears, cats (big or small) dogs (big or small), horses, camels, elephants, rhinos, hippos, hyena, tapirs, gazelles, rabbits, moles and all the rest.
- There is an order known only from the fossil record that covered the whole world except for South America and Australia. They are called creodonta. The order had bear, dog, cat, hyena, and wolverine shaped creatures amongst others.
- Another order called Archtocyonia known only from the fossil record that lived in Asia and North America had bear, dog, and hyena shaped creatures.
- Another order known only from the fossil record called Pantodonta that lived in Asia also had bear, tapir, hippo shaped creatures etc.
- Another order mostly known from fossils but some living forms also called Hyracoidea living in Asia had animals shaped like horses, tapirs, and rabbits etc.
- An order called Litopterna that lived in South America known only from the fossil record had animals shaped like horses, camels, gazelles, rhinos etc.
(6) An order called Pyrotheria that lived in South America also known only from the fossil record that had creatures shaped like elephants.
(7) Another order known only from the fossil record called Notounguta that lived in South America had animals shaped like horses, rhinos, rabbits, rodents, etc
(8) The order of Marsupialla known from fossil and living animals had representatives in both South America and Australia. In South America there were marsupials shaped like bears, dogs, cats, otters, rabbits, jerboas and kangaroo rats. And in Australia in fossil or living form there were marsupials shaped like cats, dogs, moles, mice and others.
In the above descriptions of animals will be found the great theme that is pushed today in Evolutionary biology and Paleontology. What they call convergent evolution. Which says that under long time similar natural selection the same forms of animals evolved from unrelated ancestors. In these cases each from an unrelated non-descript rodent size animal. Only this they say can explain the similarity of shape of creatures they insist evolution teaches are unrelated. They must be unrelated they say because of certain differences between the orders. Such as a regular mole and a marsupial mole while looking alike have a different reproduction system.
In the present orders and listed eight orders of animals selected above one will find constantly bear, dog, cat, horse etc shaped creatures appearing in orders of animals that are said to be completely unrelated according to
Evolutionary theory. It is the most striking thing about the fossil record and the marsupial situation in Australia today.
This was over the whole landmass of the earth. Every region as in Australia today had creatures exactly like creatures elsewhere but totally unrelated according to evolutionary theory.
Creationism can make a better explanation of the reason for such like shaped creatures that lived everywhere throughout history on this planet but said to be unrelated. And that the reason for the seeming anomaly of an almost exclusive marsupial fauna in Australia today can likewise be explained from a creationist model.
The evolutionary idea is wrong and unnecessary as an explanation. The remarkable similarity of creatures in the fossil record (yet said to be unrelated orders) is better explained that they are the same creatures after all. That there has been no convergent evolution on such a major and repeating scale but rather these similar shaped animals are the same kind from the same pair off the Ark. After the migration from the Ark minor or micro- evolution by environmental or area influences brought relatively minor changes to the geographically separated descendents. These changes would of affected all the creatures in that area in the same way. The small differences in bone structures or reproduction, as in the case of the marsupials, that are used to separate same shaped animals are not convincing or even prompting evidence of different original ancestors. Rather only an adaptation to local areas by the same creatures as elsewhere from the same parents from the Ark. The different area produced the different results and this affected all the animals in that area. Those animals in that area are not related by their adaptation but only had similar adaptation. These animals actual relatives are those that look similar elsewhere on the Planet.
For example: The above descriptions show five orders of unrelated animals (evolution says) Present, Creodonta, Arctocyonia, Pantodonta, and Marsupialla that each had a bear shaped creature. These orders covered parts of the world at some point in the past. We as creationists can confidently and simply assert that these are not different orders of unrelated bear shaped creatures but instead the same bear kind (from the pair off the Ark) with just different adaptations due to time and place. Only the present bear still exists.
The evolutionist must say these orders are unrelated bear-shaped creatures that evolved from natural selection from different ancestors. A remarkable thing surely. As the list above shows this is a constant theme in the fossil record.
In like manner all these orders have bear, dog, cat, tapir, horse, hippo, Rhino, Wolverine, rabbit shaped creatures that we as Creationists can say and insist are from the same ancestor straight off the Ark. They are not actually different orders of different animals with different ancestors but instead the same kind with variation due to area.
Again lets look at the South American fossils. There they had creatures shaped like horses, camels, rhinos, and elephants. Evolution says there is no relation between them and our present ones and just long time evolution created this similarity of form. Remarkable idea. That horse and elephant shaped creatures appeared in different parts of the world with no biological relationship between them at all is an astonishing concept. And that the relationships between creatures is determined by minor bone structures or reproduction styles is not just unproven but unreasonable. Yet that is what evolutionary biology and paleontology teaches in all their literature.
These South American horse and elephant shaped creatures are in fact the same horse and elephant as our present ones and have the same lineage back to an original pair coming off the Ark. Therefore them being said to be a unrelated different order based on some minor but common characteristics of the area has been the error of present evolutionary biology.
This brings us now to Australia and the present seeming marsupial anomaly.
Using the same line of reasoning Creationists can boldly say the Marsupial creatures of Australia are simply the same creatures as elsewhere on the earth now or in the past. The wolf and cat (now extinct) and mole shaped marsupials of Australia are the relatives of wolfs, cats, and moles elsewhere on the earth now and in the past. And all are the descendents of the original pairs from off the Ark. Likewise the other marsupial creatures of Australia are relatives of past creatures elsewhere on earth but now extinct or not.
The marsupial creatures are not related to each other because they are marsupial. That’s irrelevant. That is just an adaptation due to the environment etc of the area.
Creationism has an equal and even more plausible explanation for the seeming anomaly of marsupial and exclusivity of Australia in the present and past (as indicated by the fossil record). Also an equal and more plausible explanation for similar animal groupings in the past (shown in the fossil record) on earth who looked similar to present and past creatures elsewhere but said to be unrelated by modern science. This second matter is not so well known by the public and even well read creationists.
Present evolutionary biology and paleontology says that over great lengths of time natural selection brought about same shaped creatures at different times in different parts of the world from totally unrelated non descript rodent like creatures. Bear, dog, cat, horse, elephant shaped creatures with no biological relation whatsoever evolved in numerous places around the world from different ancestral tiny creatures. They call it called convergent evolution. This is a great theme in evolutionary biology.
Organized creationism can confidently present a better argument then before for the suitability of present and past animal distribution based on a model accepting the Biblical flood and its aftermath animal dispersal.
The fossil record shows same shaped creatures in different areas of the world with very minor differences. These creatures while shaped like other creatures in the world have minor similarities to each other in each particular area that they live in. And so a bear and cat shaped creature would have a similar ear bone or foot arrangement in that area. And while evolution will say that the ear bone or foot arrangement indicates common ancestry creationism can on contrary say these creatures are just bears and cats the same as elsewhere who due to some influence in the area adapted some minor ear or foot arrangement. All bear and cat shaped creatures etc descended from the pairs off the Ark
This line of reasoning leads to the seeming anomaly of Australia with its exclusive Marsupial fauna.
Australia is not an anomaly but rather a revelation of the true equation of post flood animal migration and adaptation.
These minor similarities of Marsupialism and bone structures in the creatures of Australia are irrelevant as to their origin and ancestral relationship. The origin and relationship of these creatures is the same as all creatures similarly shaped elsewhere on the earth now or in the past. Marsupial dogs and cats are the same kinds as regular dogs and cats, and likewise related to dogs and cats (in the fossil record but now extinct) also with minor regional body differences that lived in certain places on earth. And these came from the same pair off the ark after their kind. Only the marsupial creatures remain too tell the tale. Only the marsupial mole sameness as the placental mole elsewhere hints at the post flood common adaptations after the flood.
The marsupial creatures of Australia are the absolute same ones as elsewhere that filled the earth after the flood. The same body type is the evidence of ancestry and not minor matters as reproduction. This has been the error of modern evolutionary biology and paleontology.
To the organized creationist community I make this contribution believing that it is true. Yet also believing a previous problem for us can be turned into an exciting example to creationists, Christians, and the scientific world how faith in the accuracy of the Bible and study of what data there is can place creationism in the forefront and eye to eye with the truth of origins with anybody.
- Mammal Evolution: An Illustrated guide. R, J, G. Savage Facts on File Publications. 1986.
- Evolution, Mammals and Southern Continents: Allen Keast Albany State University. 1972.
- Prehistoric Life; The rise of the Vertebrates. David Norman Macmillan USA . 1996
See Also: Marsupial Evolution and Post-flood Migration by Chris Ashcraft