Birdwatching for creationists

| 115 Comments

I question that there is a mexican [sic] gray wolf. Subspecies don’t exist. Its [sic] just a wolf. It breeds and would with any wolf anywhere. Any slight difference in colour of fur etc is ireelevant [sic]. I’m sure the shades of this mexican [sic] are as varied as every mountain. In facxt [sic] its [sic] of a kind. This creationist says the dog kink [sic] is the smae [sic] as the bear kind and the seal kind and probably more. Its [sic] a cute doggy. Its [sic] immigrated but hopefully it assimilates and doesn’t ask for interference on its behalf to the loss of American wolves. Hopefully howls in the same way and doesn’t hyphenate its identity. Be a team member and not another team on the bench. – Robert Byers

Sic, sic, sic. I am always amazed when a so-called expert birdwatcher sees a flash go by and announces, “Oh look! That was a boreal chickadee [or a rosy-breasted pushover or whatever]!” That man claims to have 418 life ticks. According to Robert Byers, he is wasting his time: There is no such thing as a species; in fact there are only kinds. Without claiming anywhere near 418 ticks, I have amassed an almost complete portfolio of ticks – I have seen at least one bird of nearly every kind. Herewith a list of kinds of birds:

Sparrow kind, including chickadees, nuthatches, finches, warblers, wrens, and juncos – saw one.

Duck kind, including geese and loons – saw one.

Fowl kind, including chickens, turkeys, pheasants, grouse, and ptarmigans – ate one.

Raptor kind, including hawks, falcons, and eagles – saw one.

Swallow and flycatcher kind – saw one.

Seagull kind, including gulls, terns, and albatrosses – saw one.

Wader kind, including herons, pelicans, cormorants, and plovers – saw one.

Woodpecker kind, including hummingbirds – saw one.

Owl kind – saw one.

Crow kind, including jays, magpies, blackbirds, cowbirds, and grackles – saw one.

Cuckoo kind, including orioles, mockingbirds, and creationists – spoke with one.

Thus, my life ticks include 11 of 11 kinds, if you count the chicken I ate. If there are any other kinds, they are still birds, and they do not live in the United States or Canada, so to hell with them.

115 Comments

I didn’t think Raptor was a kind, I thought it was a nasty.

I was in my Aunt’s garden on Friday and I was surprised to see a pigeon (Fowl kind) zooming along as if it had afterburners blazing. A second later a Kestrel (Raptor nasty) followed…

I once watched a pair of mockingbirds (sparrow kind?) chase a hawk (raptor kind?) out of there area.

But in reality… why the hell are you giving rob this kind of exposure, you’re just encouraging him.

DiscoveredJoys: sometimes it works both ways. One spring we watched a Sharp-shinned Hawk (Raptor nasty) tail-chase a terrorized Blue Jay (Crow kind) down the length of of a shelter belt, and when they reached the end of the hedgerow, they reversed roles, and came back toward us, with the jay in hot pursuit of the hawk.

I kind of like Matt’s taxonomy. Just think: no more hassles with silent Empidonax flycatchers!

This is a perfect system, if you go one step further and just say there is the “animal” kind, and the “plant” kind, you could see everything that has ever existed in nature from my computer chair. A dog, and a fern. That is all that ever has or ever will exist in nature … who knew.

if you go one step further and just say there is the “animal” kind, and the “plant” kind,

which would a dinoflagellate with chlorophyll be?

oh, dammit, sorry, not supposed to ask questions. That’s being a dick!

and that’s bad.

:(

*sulks off to corner*

Ichthyic said: which would a dinoflagellate with chlorophyll be?

Kind of mixed up, I should think.

There are serious and knowledgeable people who say that recognizing subspecies is a bad idea. Wasn’t Steven Jay Gould one of them. In my studies I have encountered only two named subspecies. I elevated both of them to full species. So much for that!

Pete Moulton said: One spring we watched a Sharp-shinned Hawk (Raptor nasty) tail-chase a terrorized Blue Jay (Crow kind) down the length of of a shelter belt, and when they reached the end of the hedgerow, they reversed roles, and came back toward us, with the jay in hot pursuit of the hawk.

I saw this happen with my cat once.

We were in the backyard, just hanging out when Zip! a squirrel goes flashing by and zip! the cat takes off after him up a tree - the squirrel in maximum-flee-mode and the cat bolting afterwards.

Up and out they went till they both ended up on a small outer branch and the chase stopped 20 feet in the air with the squirrel at the end of the narrow branch and the cat 8 inches away.

And they stared at each other for a beat.

And then, you could literally see it on their faces - at the exact same moment they had the exact same thought.

“No way is this branch is big enough to hold up a cat”.

And the world suddenly got very unpleasant for my cat, who that day learned an important lesson. And only part of it was that cat claws don’t allow you to back down a tree.

The cat (stupid pampered pet kind) no longer chases squirrels (surprisingly pointy woodland creatures kind).

This creationist says the dog kink [sic] is the smae [sic] as the bear kind and the seal kind and probably more.

Bible-literalistic creationists have a problem defining “kink” - they have to define it so that a human and a chimp are not the smae kink. But they can’t define it so broadly that an eagle and a hawk end up being the smae kink. That would clearly conflict with Leviticus 11. So they waffle and either refuse to define the term or change the definition to suit the argument.

Perhaps RB can explain why he thinks the dog, bear and seal are the smae kink but the hawk and eagle (and the kite and osprey) aren’t.

if you go one step further and just say there is the “animal” kind, and the “plant” kind,

Animal kind and plant kind? That doesn’t leave mush room for the other fun guys!

(Not to mention the microscopic types…)

Henry J

Jim Thomerson said:

There are serious and knowledgeable people who say that recognizing subspecies is a bad idea. Wasn’t Steven Jay Gould one of them.

Can you provide a citation? No? His discussion of smae and fidderent kinks is really interesting.

Henry J said:

That doesn’t leave mush room for the other fun guys.

Ouch!

@ #1: that kestrel is proof of intelligent design =D

stevaroni said: “No way is this branch is big enough to hold up a cat”.

A true Coyote-Roadrunner moment.

Kind of mixed up, I should think.

damn that reality!

*shakes fist*

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/art[…]016-0199.pdf

I’m so confooozed…

I object. Pelicans are not waders, they must be another kink. Humming birds are another yet. You left out buzzards, but they are arguably in the raptor kink. There is a clearly distinct parrot kink, and they live in the USA, even if introduced and invasive.

But the glaring omission that shows you have no understanding of True Kinks of Birds is that you completely forgot Batkink!

That robert guy (read some of his stuff at the old Dawkins forum) almost convinces me that there must be a god to create something like him. And that he would have an incredible sense of humour. Or is that guy a hypothetical god’s attempt of satire? Anyway, hard to imagine evolution could have anything to do with the likes of him. Amazing.

This presumes that “kinds” are something like orders of birds. My extensive experience with creationists has shown me that kinds are:

1) Always genera 2) Typically families 3) Invariably the same as species 4) Something else, maybe.

Generally within the context of a single argument.

Creationist uber-idiot Jabriol once argued that the cat family constituted a single kind, then later claimed that lions and house cats were different kinds, in the space of the same email. When the contradiction was pointed out to him, his classic reply was, “that you problem, i has define kind”. Always eloquent, our jabby.

The only thing all creationists agree on is that humans are absolutely a different kind than anything else.

In general, I find “kinds” get bigger and more inclusive as you get away from humans. I’m not sure if this is a result of familiarity breeding more awareness of fine distinctions, or simple ignorance of the diversity of the groups they’re stuffing together, or some other psychology. Humans are a “kind” species. The rest of the primates tend to be kinds at genera or there about. The rest of the mammals and the birds tend to be kinds at the family level, though some (like rodents) are often made into “kinds” at the order level. Reptiles are almost always lumped into “kinds” equivalent to orders. Many creationists are fine with all fish constituting one kind, and away from the vertebrates, kinds might often be classes or entire phyla (insects, when creationists bother to remember they exist, tend to be divided as orders).

It’s amusing to hear a creationist who claims there are huge, unbridgeable gaps between humans and chimps, lump guppies, hammerhead sharks, batfish and flounder into the same kind without any qualms.

But, you know, this is all science, right?

Creationist uber-idiot Jabriol once argued that the cat family constituted a single kind, then later claimed that lions and house cats were different kinds, in the space of the same email. When the contradiction was pointed out to him, his classic reply was, “that you problem, i has define kind”.

Given his response, I wonder what kind he thinks LOLcats are. “I can haz baramin?”

Tulse (or anyone who can), that haz to be a picture. Can u make it?

Part of the Creationist scam is refusing to clearly define what a “kind” is. Is it a genus, a family or even an order? Creationists do not say, so whenever we show that one species gave rise to another, they can always move the goalposts and claim those two species are still of the same “kind”.

Don’t forget Robert Byers is the guy who thinks thylacine are “wolf kind”. Srsly.

If “kinds” are that flexible, you might think he’d have no problem with humans and chimps being the same “kind” but of course he does.

Then there’s the non-flying bird kind.

Are penguins, ostriches, emu’s, Rheas and Kiwi’s all the same kind?

but penguins swim, so maybe they’re fish kind?

alloytoo said:

but penguins swim, so maybe they’re fish kind?

Just back from a few laps at the pool. What the hell does that make me?

The Founding Mothers said:

alloytoo said:

but penguins swim, so maybe they’re fish kind?

Just back from a few laps at the pool. What the hell does that make me?

Damp.

dpr

Michael Suttkus, II said: … In general, I find “kinds” get bigger and more inclusive as you get away from humans. I’m not sure if this is a result of familiarity breeding more awareness of fine distinctions, or simple ignorance of the diversity of the groups they’re stuffing together, or some other psychology. …

Easy: They have to fit into the ark.

The interesting question is the taxonomy (or should that be baraminology?) of creationists. Is it right to classify creationists as a single kind? Are there subgroups that, while potentially interfertile, are separated by geographic or theological barriers that prevent cross-pollination?

Consider Hucksteria hovindae (commonly called “the Florida booby”). This species is distinguished by its characteristic orange jumpsuit plumage and its generally prone posture (indeed, it lies at virtually all times except, paradoxically, when it is asleep).

Contrast this with the elegant Intellectuus dembskii with its attractive ‘cardigan’ plumage and distinctive banneds that grow in number at an astonishing rate, sometimes two or three per week.

And then there is the feared and ferocious Flaccidus luskinius, (or the Seattle Whinger). This terrifying creature will defend itself and its brood with a characteristic snivel and display of footstamping and frantic flapping. Those subjected to such an attack have been known to be paralysed with laughter for minutes at a time.

Can these all truly be said to belong to the same species? That they are ‘cousins’ is indisputable: their fundraising and persecution calls are strikingly similar. They also have the cuckoo’s habit of occasionally laying an egg in their competitors’ nests (Wells’s shitehawk springs to mind) which, when hatched, insinuates itself into the other species and defecates over all it sees.

The answer must clearly be that yes: the Theory of Evolution proves they are. Under evolutionary pressure they have been forced a wide variety of habitats (Arkansas, Kansas, and Dover, Pennsylvania are clear examples) to adopt a common diet, indicating a shared metabolic ancestry. They have all been reduced to eating Crow.

That is genius, Amadan.

Michael Suttkus, II said:

It’s amusing to hear a creationist who claims there are huge, unbridgeable gaps between humans and chimps, lump guppies, hammerhead sharks, batfish and flounder into the same kind without any qualms.

Amusing, but not surprising. I suspect that the real difference in their minds is that humans have souls (image of God and all), while they believe chimps don’t have souls. Kinds may not matter so much once you’ve made the primary distinction between the “human” kind and the “everything else” kinds.

One thing is for sure, Byers is one of a kind.

If dogs bears and seals are “so alike in morphology that there is no reason to see them as anything but a kind”, then obviously humans, chimps, gorillas and orangs are one kind as well. And, according to the magic flood hypothesis, they all must have arisen by speciation in the last six thousand years. Of course that would mean that there were no humans around to build the ark. Oh well, so much for baraminology.

Does that mean Noah was a chimpanzee?

RDK said:

Byers:

Yet further i see dogs and bears and water bears(seals0 as so alike in morphology that theres no reason to see them as anything but of a kind. Birds mat have wings but that is a minor point relevant to their kinds. Noah had a dove but the dodo is just a flightless dove. So the seal is a water bea/dog.

WTF am I reading? Is he talking about this water bear?

So dogs and bears are related to microscopic extremophiles?

Byers is either fatally compromised in the head, or he’s the greatest sock ever made.

You must be new here. Byers is our resident wingnut.

Maybe Noah’s family were really ManBearPigs. That would’ve saved some room on the ark.

Someone alert Al Gore.

Leviticus 11 makes a distinction between the following bird:

eagle, ossifrage, osprey, vulture, kite, raven, owl, night hawk, cuckoo, hawk, little owl, cormorant, great owl, swan, pelican, gier eagle, stork, heron, lapwing and bat.

Now granted, we don’t know exactly what current Linnaean species the original Hebrew words referred to; but it seems that the Bible makes a sufficient distinction between, say, the eagle and the hawk, that they must be separate “kinds”. So what makes an eagle and a hawk different “kinds”, but not a human and a chimp or a cat and a tiger?

DS said:

One thing is for sure, Byers is one of a kind.

If dogs bears and seals are “so alike in morphology that there is no reason to see them as anything but a kind”, then obviously humans, chimps, gorillas and orangs are one kind as well. And, according to the magic flood hypothesis, they all must have arisen by speciation in the last six thousand years. Of course that would mean that there were no humans around to build the ark. Oh well, so much for baraminology.

You’re missing the obvious solution. We didn’t come from apes, apes came from us.

Henry J said:

Does that mean Noah was a chimpanzee?

Technically, we’re pretty much all chimpanzees.

John_S said:

Leviticus 11 makes a distinction between the following bird:

eagle, ossifrage, osprey, vulture, kite, raven, owl, night hawk, cuckoo, hawk, little owl, cormorant, great owl, swan, pelican, gier eagle, stork, heron, lapwing and bat.

Now granted, we don’t know exactly what current Linnaean species the original Hebrew words referred to; but it seems that the Bible makes a sufficient distinction between, say, the eagle and the hawk, that they must be separate “kinds”. So what makes an eagle and a hawk different “kinds”, but not a human and a chimp or a cat and a tiger?

One could say these kinds are from a later division after the flood. not the original kinds. Hawhs and eagles are considered different kinds now and so it was then. Yet when filling the ark they would of been of the same kind. Kind in the bible could be just a word for practical differences without indicating the original kind from whence the types originated. kind does not preclude diversity later from it. So one can squeeze types into a kind if morphology etc allows it.

Robert

You do such a send up of creationism that I think you are an atheist having a joke

Robert Byers said:

John_S said:

Leviticus 11 makes a distinction between the following bird:

eagle, ossifrage, osprey, vulture, kite, raven, owl, night hawk, cuckoo, hawk, little owl, cormorant, great owl, swan, pelican, gier eagle, stork, heron, lapwing and bat.

Now granted, we don’t know exactly what current Linnaean species the original Hebrew words referred to; but it seems that the Bible makes a sufficient distinction between, say, the eagle and the hawk, that they must be separate “kinds”. So what makes an eagle and a hawk different “kinds”, but not a human and a chimp or a cat and a tiger?

One could say these kinds are from a later division after the flood. not the original kinds. Hawhs and eagles are considered different kinds now and so it was then. Yet when filling the ark they would of been of the same kind. Kind in the bible could be just a word for practical differences without indicating the original kind from whence the types originated. kind does not preclude diversity later from it. So one can squeeze types into a kind if morphology etc allows it.

No, Byers is just an idiot who is a joke.

Michael Roberts said:

Robert

You do such a send up of creationism that I think you are an atheist having a joke

If he really is an atheist, then he’s done such a good job fooling PZ Myers, who banned him from Pharyngula for being a pretentious and annoying moron.

Robert Byers said:

One could say these kinds are from a later division after the flood. not the original kinds. Hawhs and eagles are considered different kinds now and so it was then. Yet when filling the ark they would of been of the same kind. Kind in the bible could be just a word for practical differences without indicating the original kind from whence the types originated. kind does not preclude diversity later from it. So one can squeeze types into a kind if morphology etc allows it.

Exactly. So only two chimps had to get on the ark. Gorillas, humans and orangs evolved after the flood. So human only evolved after Noah built the ark, but at least there was plenty of room on the magic ark so every “kind” could survive the magic flood. So hawhs and eagleses were alive before the flood and they all perished, but a single pair of bird “kind” made it onto the ark and in a mere six thousand years recreated all the different birds (except doves which Noah needed to look for dry land later). There, problem solved. Now everyone can fit on the ark, happy as the clams who didn’t need to get on the ark. They all had plenty to eat on the voyage and after so nobody had to go extinct (except the dinosaurs who apparently pissed god off later on, maybe by eating some more of those magic apples she is so touchy about).

By the way, according to Byers, it should be illegal to serve any pasta other than spaghetti in any public institution cause ya know the pastafarians worship the flying spaghetti monster and for them any other pasta is forbidden. So ya know wes all gots ta bow down to the holy FSM. We cants eats linguini, rigatoni, vermacelli, elbows, shells, corkscrews, or any other type of pasta cause it would offend their delicate sensibilities. And don’t even mention angel hair, those traitors and charlatans will get what they deserve. See how easy it is to run the government when you have to pretend that every religion is right. See how easy it is not to establish any government endorsed religion by pretending that all religions are right.

Robert Byers said:

One could say these kinds are from a later division after the flood. not the original kinds.

Hawks and eagles are considered different kinds now and so it was then. Yet when filling the ark they would of been of the same kind.

… kind does not preclude diversity later from it.

Ahhh.…

So they were just one type of animal, but they, um… diverged, and now they are just two distinct types of animal which have separate characteristics and populations and no longer interbreed.

Seems I’ve heard that description before somewhere.…

Michael Roberts said:

Robert

You do such a send up of creationism that I think you are an atheist having a joke

No. Sadly, this one is for real.

Byers is a free-range nutbag well known in the evolution-denial world.

The odd part is that his pet rant is the fallacy of the separation of church and state in the American legal and educational system. Odd because Byers himself is a Canadian, and therefore doesn’t have a dog in the fight.

I suppose the deal is that he has to rant somewhere, and the Canadians, being an eminently practical people, just won’t listen to his lunacy (although they probably ignore him quote politely).

Um… “ignore him quite politely.”

stevaroni said:

Ahhh.…

So they were just one type of animal, but they, um… diverged, and now they are just two distinct types of animal which have separate characteristics and populations and no longer interbreed.

Seems I’ve heard that description before somewhere.…

No, you’re thinking of evolution. Evilutionists admit that that would take millions of years. Byers claims that it had to happen in just six thousand years. Se there were only two birds, two reptiles, two mammals and two amphibians on the ark. They regenerated all the diversity because it was preprogrammed into their DNA, so it really wouldn’t take all that long. The fact that there is a nested hierarchy of genetic similarity, even between major groups, is just by chance don’t you know. Remember, there are no transitional fossils (at least according to some arbitrary definition that I’m not even going to try to explain). The major groups never really shared any common ancestors. We could still get millions of more species out of every individual if we just knew how to unlock the magic invisible hologram that controls development.:):):)

I have seen Byers’ nonsense posts on theology Web

DS said:

No, you’re thinking of evolution. Evilutionists admit that that would take millions of years. Byers claims that it had to happen in just six thousand years.

Actually in about one thousand years - from the Flood to Moses, in the example he gave.

Actually in about one thousand years - from the Flood to Moses, in the example he gave.

And then something happened to bring it to a screeching halt?

Henry J

Amadan–a late comment, I know, but.…brilliant! Genius! I think I just pulled a muscle laughing! This will be emailed to my mom and sis *stat*!

Ichthyic said:

if you go one step further and just say there is the “animal” kind, and the “plant” kind,

which would a dinoflagellate with chlorophyll be?

oh, dammit, sorry, not supposed to ask questions. That’s being a dick!

and that’s bad.

:(

*sulks off to corner*

Green, I would guess.

amy o in yokohama said:

Amadan–a late comment, I know, but.…brilliant! Genius! I think I just pulled a muscle laughing! This will be emailed to my mom and sis *stat*!

Blushes…

Silly, Noah and his family were Ardipithecus ramidus, from which both humans and chimps evolved. Humans became more specialized for walking and chimps for climbing.

Amandon, your creationist kinds are hilarious.

Stanton, may I quote you?

I always wonder why creationists get their collective panties in a bunch over the idea that we, humans, are related to monkeys, yet, feel it’s hunky-dory that we’re descended from, and are still being punished for the unforgivable crimes of a pair of disobedient morons who screwed up the Universe beyond even the ability of God to repair.

English has hopefully to counterbalance regretfully but is lacking a “hopeably” to counterbalance regrettably.

I’ve been reading this blog on a reandom foundation for greater than a month. Sustain the content.

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This page contains a single entry by Matt Young published on August 29, 2010 4:07 PM.

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