Creationists in awe of Yellowstone animals' complex relationships

Yellowstone Bison

Yellowstone Bison

Canyon Ministries is putting out a series of books that explain the major American national wonders–the Grand Canyon, Bryce–from a creationist point of view. But when it comes to Yellowstone National Park, where the big draw is wildlife, church founder Tom Vail is turning to animals’ complex relationships with each other and plants to argue that they didn’t just evolve.

Vail has been guiding people through the wonders of the Grand Canyon for 33 years. He says only in the last 18, after he became a Christian, did he start talking about creationism and looking at the canyon in a new light. For a while he’d puzzled over why the layers and folds in the rock seemed–to oversimplify his argument–too neat. A sudden event, the flood, made more sense to him.

Looking at Grand Canyon: A Different Perspective on Amazon, you’ll see people either love it or hate it. Of 70 reviews, 27 are five star, mostly along the lines of “The wonders of God’s hand through the power of cataclysm are portrayed here. The Grand Canyon book store can’t keep them on the shelf.” Many claim that skeptics want the book “censored” or “banned,” which I don’t see any evidence of. And then there are the 34 one star reviews, which praise the photographs but then say things like “However the text pretends to discuss the geology of the area but does so only from the point of view its biblical literalist authors….This book espouses both bad science and bad theology under one cover.” Some claim to have mistakenly bought the religious book, though I don’t see how that’s possible.

In a book he hopes to have out by the end of the year, Vail is turning to Yellowstone and its animals and ecosystems.

“Research has been done that verifies Indian legend and cowboy lore that found badgers and coyotes will hunt cooperatively,” Vail says. Normally the animals might eat each other, but they team up against prairie dogs and ground squirrels, with the coyote chasing and the badger digging. “That doesnt fit with survival of the fittest evolution. How do you have a cooperative endeavor of animals?” In other cases a bug or animal may become the necessary pollinator for a specific plant.
For me that doesn’t pose a problem with evolution. Sometimes–maybe most of the time–animals have to communicate and cooperate to survive and thrive. Survival of the fittest doesn’t just mean every man for himself; it can mean cooperation wins. But I’m curious to see all the peculiar cross-species relationships Vail finds; they’re one of the most fascinating parts of animal tourism.
buffalo Where to SEE BUFFALO, Bison and Wisent

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