Oldest modern bird found according to reports in BBC News 5 May, ABC News in Science 6 May 2015, Science 8 May doi: 10.1126/science.348.6235.617 and Nature Communications doi:10.1038/ncomms7987, 5 May 2015. Palaeontologists in China have found two fossils of a previously unknown bird species they have named Archaeornithura meemannae. The fossils are very well preserved and have all the features of living birds – wings with a small projection on the front edge and fused bones at the ends, pennate wing and tail feathers, and a furcula (wishbone). All these indicate it was a good agile flyer. It also had long legs without feathers and feet like those of a modern wading bird.
The fossils were found in the Sichakou basin in Hebei province, and are dated as 130.7 million years. According to Wang Min of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, “The new fossil represents the oldest record of Ornithuromorpha. It pushed back the origination date of Ornithuromorpha by at least five million years”. Ornithuromorpha is the group name for all modern birds.
The specialised features of A. meemannae caused a problem for scientists classifying the bird as it looks like it should have evolved from another specialised group named Hongshanornithidae, but the rocks it was found in make it the oldest dated modern bird. The researcher wrote: “These inconsistencies between stratigraphy and phylogeny require the presence of ghost lineages and a much earlier origination date for the Ornithuromorpha, which in turn pushes back the divergence time with enantiornithines and other primitive avian lineages”.
Editorial Comment: You heard it first from real scientists in a prestigious scientific publication: in order to believe this bird evolved from some primitive ancestor you have to believe what doesn’t exist – ghosts of the missing lineage kind! This is a very real admission that there is no evidence this fossil bird was ever anything else. The real evidence, rather than the ghostly evolutionary suggestions show that the only real difference between this fossil find and the birds we see wading and flying around today is that it is dead. To say it more simply this bird looks like a modern wading bird because that is what it was. Its extinction is a sad reminder that the world is going downhill and losing living creatures, not evolving upwards and gaining them. (Ref. ornithology, fossilisation)
Evidence News vol. 15, No. 7
13 May 2015
Creation Research Australia