Researchers in China have discovered a mass of fossils near the Danshui River that date to the Cambrian Explosion, a biological phenomenon that defies Darwinian evolution. A study published in Science on Friday describes the trove of 101 animal species preserved in exquisite detail, including soft tissue like gills, muscles, digestive systems, appendages, and even eyes. So far, 53 percent of the species found were previously unknown.
Paleontologists said mudflows quickly swallowed the animals and buried them in fine-grain soil. As sediment “cemented” around the tiny bodies, it locked out microbes and halted the process of decay, Robert Gaines, co-author of the study, told Live Science.
The Cambrian Explosion refers to the appearance of a huge diversity of complex animals in the fossil record in a relatively short period of time. Evolutionists date the event to about 500 million years ago.
The study’s authors say the discovery has “the potential to greatly inform the understanding of early animal evolution.” But discoveries of Cambrian fossils have never brought forth new explanations from evolutionary biologists, the Discovery Institute’s intelligent design experts wrote on the organization’s blog. New discoveries only highlight the fact that evolutionists, who contend that animals evolved into gradually more advanced forms of life over the course of 40 million to 50 million years, can offer no explanations for how these complex animals showed up so abruptly in the fossil record.
Hugh Ross, founder of the old Earth creationist organization Reasons to Believe, said the challenges the Cambrian Explosion poses for evolutionary scientists defy all macroevolutionary models. Evolutionists often ask him why God would choose to create Cambrian animals at the time and place they appear, he wrote on the organization’s blog. He answered that God desired to create a home for human beings where they could launch and sustain civilization.
“Unless God created the Cambrian animals in the greatest possible diversity at the greatest possible abundance levels at the earliest time permitted by the laws of physics and the history of the universe, human beings and human civilization would be impossible,” he wrote.
The newfound Cambrian fossils could exist in such detail and still possess soft tissue only if their burial occurred very rapidly, like during the global flood described in Genesis 7 and 8, said Elizabeth Mitchell, an expert with Answers in Genesis. Her organization supports a literal interpretation of the Biblical six-day creation story and other events in Genesis.
“The existence of the Cambrian fossils does not argue for our evolutionary origins, but quite the contrary,” Mitchell wrote on the organization’s website, noting that the fossils should remind us that observational science does not support the worldview of evolutionism. “It should remind us that God created remarkably diverse forms of life, memorialized for us in the Cambrian fossils.”