Pragma Synesi – interesting bits

Compendium of interesting bits I come across, with an occasional IMHO

The creationists’ Ark

A few days ago I was reading Robert Cringely’s comment on the opening of the Creation Museum. The first reader response is by a fervent creationist who included a reference to “a global flood that destroyed and buried most land-dwelling creatures on the earth.”

Which got me thinking.

If I correctly remember it, it was Noah’s Ark that was supposed to have saved the land-dwellers that gave rise to our current animal kingdom. Which made me wonder — if I knew all earth was going to be flooded soon, how could I save a pair of all the land-dwelling animals on an Ark for repopulation?

My immediate difficulty in planning would be provision of sufficient food for the carnivores (assuming no refrigeration, of course). If I only took two rabbits on the Ark, either the foxes would starve or there would be no rabbits left and the foxes would be skinnier by the end of the flood. I’d have to estimate how many rabbits to include to keep the foxes’ stomach from grumbling and still have a pair left at the end.

But that wouldn’t be enough, because as soon as I let the two foxes off the Ark with the two rabbits, the foxes would eat the rabbits before they could reproduce and then starve to death themselves — which means even more rabbits must be on board! I’d need to know how much the foxes eat, how fast the rabbits and the foxes reproduce, and include a nice margin of error to figure out the exact number of rabbits I’d have to start the voyage with.

Then calculate the amount of fresh carrots those rabbits are going to eat on board. Oops, are there going to be fresh carrots left on earth after the flood for all those bunnies to eat, or would I have to take enough to last until carrots grow again from seed? Good question. And that’s just a two-link food chain — what about the more complicated eco-systems? This calculation would have to be done for all the species. I hope God would provide me with the answers, ’cause I’d need a library and a computer to figure it out myself, and making a mistake would mean an extinct species. It seems Noah goofed up too, with all those dinosaurs going extinct.

Which reminds me, this flood is going to be all over the earth, and even though my Ark is being built in the Middle East, I’d have to pick up a panda, a kangaroo, an elephant — oh, make that an Indian and an African elephant… uhm… that would take quite a while to transport them from those far-away locations, and the transportation requires the same food logistics… ouch…

So how many species do I actually have to worry about? Just googled it: there are over a million named species. That’s going to be a hell of a big Ark even if we ignore the ones that won’t drown.

I wonder how I am going save all the viruses and bacteria? Is my family going to have to be a carrier of all the diseases? I’m just imagining sending out my sons to a brothel with instructions to acquire all the strains of VD…

Don’t people ever think about this when they read the Bible?


June 7, 2007 - Posted by | Bible, creationism, religion

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