Baleen whales, such as humpback whales, are well known for communicating with “whale songs” but vocalising under water is not easy for an air-breathing mammal as air must be kept out of the respiratory passages when the animal is diving.  Try talking under water when you are holding your breath. 

A group of scientists have studied the larynxes (voice boxes) of baleen whales and found it has air sac that can recycle from the lungs during breath-holding, along with a unique sound producing structure consisting of a U-shaped vocal fold and an overlying fat pad.  Sound is produced by vibrations produced by air passing between the vocal folds in the fat pad.  This is completely different from how other mammals produce sounds, so the researchers claim it is an “evolutionary novelty”. 

According to Nature News and Views the research “also provides insights into the evolution of the folds-to-fat vocalization method.”  This larynx structure was found in all the baleen whales studied, so the research team claim this method of producing sounds must have evolved in the ancestors of modern baleen whales, as they migrated back from land to water.

References: Outside JEB 30 April 2024; Nature News and Views 21 February 2024; Nature 21 February 2024 doi: 10.1038/s41586-024-07080-1

Editorial Comment:  Calling something an evolutionary novelty is a deceitful way of saying it provides no evidence of evolving at all. This study certainly reveals how the whale vocalisation system works, but admit it guys, it provides absolutely no insights into evolution.  The whale larynxes studied by these researchers already existed and were fully functional.  They show nothing about how a non-whale larynx turned into a whale larynx.

Underwater vocalisation by air breathing whales is a reminder that there is more to changing a land animal into whale than changing the legs into flippers and adding tail flukes. Think about it – how many half-evolved whales would have drowned trying to talk under water with a land animal larynx before they developed the system seen in living whales?

This study confirms Genesis, which tells us that God created the great sea creatures according to their kinds, in their fully functional state for living and communicating under water. (Genesis 1:20-23)

Creation Research News 15 May 2024

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