Extinction may result from natural selection: "survival of the fittest" means that variations of organisms develop less-competitive attributes in a population causing a sub-population to decrease until extinct. Extinction is also the result of catastrophic environmental effects (such as the global disaster of the flood of Noah) that can destroy life in some or all ecological niches. In modern times, however, many extinctions have been caused by human activities.
When a global disaster destroys all members of one or more species, it is called mass extinction.
Extinction and Genetics
In Genetic Entropy John Sanford asserts that due to generational degradation in human genome due to mutations, the ultimate extinction of the human genome is inexorable, inevitable and immutable. His assertions prove out with current medical observations, such as worldwide rise in human infertility and while experts attempt to blame localized problems such as toxins or stress, the problem is worldwide in scope. In addition, practically every news outlet has reported the alarming rise in cancer rates all over the world.
These issues are directly related to loss-of-function in the human genome and its ongoing decline in fitness over many generations. Sanford's extinction assertions dovetail with the creationist understanding that the current Creation is temporary and has a finite duration
The fact remains that extinction without replacement dominates the living systems as a universal rule. Scientists now claim that we are presently witnessing a worldwide mass-extinction, apparently the sixth mass extinction in the history of the world. These histrionics aside, science-at-large fully recognizes that mass extinction of all life forms is an observable reality and is moving at an alarming pace.
Extinction and Evolution
Evolutionists tend to claim that 95–99 percent of species have become extinct. Such assertions are not based on evidence, but presuppositions of the general theory of evolution. If evolution is true, an enormous number of kinds of organisms must be imagined in the past, a much greater number of kinds of organisms than are now living, and a much greater number than are represented as fossils. Careful consideration reveals that universal common ancestry demands a great number, even an astronomical number, of transitional forms of life, and that the species which became extinct must be replaced by new varieties. However, data concerning known species does not support this claim of high extinction number. Jonathan Sarfati comments:
|“||The number of fossil species actually found is estimated to be about 250,000, while there are about three million living ‘species,’ or even more, depending on who’s telling the story. But if this >95% claim were correct, we would expect many more fossil species than living ones.||”|
- Main Article: Dinosaur extinction
The mass extinction of dinosaur's seems to many to be a puzzling scientific mystery. Within standard-model evolutionary thought, dinosaur's became extinct by some type of catastrophe around 50 to 65 million years ago. The predominant theory is an asteroid, however, there are a number of problem with this theory. One problem recognized by Darwin is the abundance of living fossils. Sarfati provides other examples:
- The extinction was not that sudden (using evolutionary/long-age interpretations of the geological record). But the spread in the geological record makes sense if much of the sedimentary deposits were formed in Noah’s flood.
- Light-sensitive species survived.
- Extinctions don’t correlate with crater dates, even given evolutionary dating assumptions.
- Modern volcanic eruptions don’t cause global extinction patterns, even if they cause a temporary temperature drop.
- The iridium enrichment, supposedly a key proof of meteor impact, is not nearly as clearly defined as claimed.
- Drill cores of the apparent ‘smoking gun’ crater on the Yucatán peninsula in southeast Mexico do not support the idea that it is an impact crater.
- It seems that some scientists didn’t speak out against the idea for fear of undermining the ‘nuclear winter’ idea, and being grouped with ‘nuclear warmongers.’
- Genetic Entropy, 2005 Elim Publishing, John Sanford, p. 83
- Revelation 21:1
- Sarfati, Jonathan. Refuting Evolution 2 Chapter 8 - Argument: The fossil record supports evolution. Greenforest AR: Master Books, 2002. (p144-145)
- Sarfati, p145
- Sarfati, p146
- Charles Darwin on Extinction Biology Online