Crickets evolving into oblivion, according to an article in ScienceNOW 21Sep 2006. Male field crickets have a series of grooves on their wings, which they rub together to make a characteristic chirping sound in order to attract a mate. Unfortunately the chirping sound also attracts a parasitic fly that has recently moved into the Hawaiian Islands. In 2003 ecologists at a research station on the Island of Kauai noticed that although there was very little cricket chirping, there still seemed to be plenty of crickets. They examined the crickets and found their wings did not have the grooves needed to make the chirping sound. Further research showed that over 90% of the male crickets on the island had a “flatwing” mutation, so how did the crickets attract mates if they couldn’t chirp? They suggested that silent “flatwing” males positioned themselves near chirping males and then intercepted females attracted by chirps.

To test this idea they played cricket chirping through a loud speaker in a patch of grass, and over 100 silent crickets were attracted to it. The researchers estimated the crickets had developed the flatwing aberration in about 20 generations – an amazingly fast change, according to evolutionary biologist William Cade of University of Lethbridge, Canada. Another evolutionary biologist, Darryl Gwynne of the University of Toronto says he’s waiting “with baited breath to see what evolution is going to give us.”

Editorial Comment: To save Darryl Gwynne from holding his breath, Creation Research predicts that the flies will eventually kill off the normal chirping crickets, and therefore the mutant silent crickets will be selected as survivors but will shortly afterwards die out from lack of mates.

Although it is the result of a structural change brought about by a mutation, this is not evolution. The change from grooved wings to flat wings in the crickets shows that change is real, but it is change from complex to simple – the opposite of evolution. The change is the result of degeneration, of both flies and crickets, and fits well into the biblical history of the world of created perfection followed by degeneration. (Ref. entomology, reproduction, ecology)

Evidence News 11 October 2006