Oldest mahogany found, according to ScienceDaily and University of Kansas News 15 April 2020, and American Journal of Botany 5 January 2020 doi: 10.1002/ajb2.1416.
Brian Atkinson of University of Kansa has studied a fossilised fruit found in a rock collected on Shelter Point on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada, and identified it as belonging to the Meliaceae, the mahogany family. The fossil fruit is exceptionally well preserved, enabling Atkinson to study it internal structure. He described it as being “strikingly similar to the genus Melia L.” Because it has some small differences from this genus the fossil fruit has been classified as a new genus and species and given the name Manchestercarpa vancouverensis.
The rock layer it was found in is dated as Upper Cretaceous, 79–72 million years old. This makes the fossil fruit the oldest fossil of the mahogany family. The University of Kansas news article commented: “While it’s noteworthy that Atkinson has pushed back the origin story of mahogany, he stressed it also helps improve our understanding of the rate of early flowering plant evolution and, in turn, our grasp of larger modern ecosystems.”
Links: ScienceDaily, University of Kansas
Editorial Comment: This find will tell scientists nothing about the rate of early flowering plant evolution unless they already believe that flowering plants evolved from non-flowering plants, and already believe the rock layer is around 80 million years old.
This fossil is the fully formed fruit of a flowering plant, and the fact that it can be identified as a mahogany fruit only proves that mahogany trees were already fully formed mahogany trees since this fruit was buried, and they show no evidence of having been any other plant, no matter how old anyone believes this fossil is. The minor differences in structure that led scientists to classify it as a new genus are simply variation within kind, and simply indicate there may have been a larger variety of mahogany trees in the past.
Overall, this fossil is good evidence that flowering, fruit-bearing mahogany trees were created as fully functional plants, according to their kind, and have reproduced after their kind ever since – just as Genesis tells us.
Creation Research News
8 July 2020