Petroglyph not a pterosaur, according to Science (AAAS) News 25 August 2015. Scientists from France, UK and USA have studied a petroglyph on the wall of Black Dragon Canyon that has been claimed to be a giant winged reptile like a pterosaur. The scientists used portable X-ray fluorescence to reveal that the petroglyph is actually a group of five individual petroglyphs, including a human figure and various animals.

The researchers reported their results in the journal Antiquity, where they referenced various creationists, including Vance Nelson, as claiming the petroglyph was a pterosaur.

The Science News article goes on to report as follows: “One of the creationists referenced in the paper, Vance Nelson, wrote a book called Untold Secrets of Planet Earth: Dire Dragons, which argues that ancient people saw dinosaurs, which they called dragons, and depicted the creatures in art, including the Black Dragon Canyon pictograph. However, when he returned to the canyon and reexamined the pictograph shortly after his book was printed in 2011, he realized that the panel showed five separate images. He’s since removed the mention of the Black Dragon Canyon pterosaur from subsequent printings of the book, he says. ‘I completely agree with their findings, and they did a good job,’ Nelson says. ‘I’m disappointed they still referenced me in the paper because I don’t stand by that interpretation anymore.’ When he had his own revelation in 2011, he contacted others within the creation science community but was unable to change some minds, he says. ‘Hopefully this paper, which reveals details invisible to the human eye, will dissuade them from believing in the pterosaur.’”
The above quote also included a link to Vance’s book on the Amazon bookshop.

Link: Science News

Editorial Comment: Note that it was in 2011 that the true nature of this petroglyph was researched by creationists, but in 2015 the writers of the Antiquity report are claiming that they worked it out, and blame creationists for claiming it is a pterosaur.

Vance Nelson explains: “Until early 2011, the preponderance of secular sources on the rock art of Black Dragon Canyon agreed that these pictographs were in fact a unified pictograph that looked something like a bird, or a “Cretaceous flying reptile”. (Barnes, F.A. & M. Pendleton, 1979. Canyon country prehistoric Indians: their cultures, ruins, artifacts, and rock art [Canyon Country 13]. Salt Lake City UT: Wasatch Publishers: p201.) As creationists, however, we’ve known since at least May of 2011, that this evidence was not usable as a pterosaur, since first-hand re-investigation by Vance Nelson demonstrated it was five separate pictographs, and not a single unified pictograph. Furthermore, it didn’t take X-ray Fluoresence to prove it.

Vance Nelson has also researched other petroglyphs, including the Kachina Bridge dinosaur. His report Kachina Bridge Dinosaur Refuted? can be downloaded here. 

Evidence News vol. 15, No. 16
16 September 2015
Creation Research Australia