Hilariously enough, whale evolution has always been one of the most iconic pieces of evidence in support of evolutionary biology, because of the distinct number of ‘transitional fossils’ connecting whales to their supposed evolutionary predecessors, the hippopotamus (or just hippo if you like). In fact, it’s upheld so much, that Nature has published it as their #1 Gem for evolution. Indeed, their are a number of books out there on evolution that love to reference whale evolution as evidence for evolution, such as The Evidence for Evolution by Alan Rogers. Sadly, whales couldn’t care less about this nonsense, and here is why.
Now, evolutionism tells us this is the connective link between the hippo and the whale in terms of transitional forms.
This is also the diagram put up for “whale evolution” on the Berkeley University website. So, why did this not happen? We will make this very clear (although we also wont pick on the fact that pakicetus actually predates indohyus, according to the fossils by millions of years, even though the diagram clearly puts indohyus first).
Now, traditionally, out of all the animals you see on that diagram, pakicetus comes the earliest in the fossil record (excluding hippos), around 52,000,000 years ago. After pakicetus comes ambulocetus about 48,600,000 years ago, and then you have fully developed aquatic whales appearing somewhere around 40,000,000 years ago. So the evolutionists have around 12,000,000 years for this evolutionary process to take place, and they also have all those ‘transitional links’ you can see up in the diagram in support of the idea that such a transition between hippos and whales actually took place. However, a problematic discovery was made in regards to this evolutionary framework.
National Geographic reported on a discovery (that a few others sources record here, here and here), on a very damaging fossil discovery. Now, what was so damaging about this fossil discovery? Well, a fossil of a fully aquatic ‘proto-whale’ was found that dates 49,500,000 years old. You heard that right, this fully-developed, fully-aquatic whale that was found to be 49,500,000 years old. This means that fully aquatic whales predate semi-aquatic whales. According to the above diagram, you’ll see that those ‘whales’ (for the sake of argument, all of them will be called ‘whales’ to make the evolutionists happy) gradually develop from being fully terrestrial, and they progressively become more aquatic as the fossil record moves forwards. But now, our very oldest whale (apart from pakicetus) is… Fully aquatic. This fossil is of an ambulocetids ‘whale’, by the way.
So, the only possible transitional form left that can support whale evolution is… Pakicetus. Pakicetus is the only one of these ‘transitional’ forms that actually lived before fully aquatic whales show up in the fossil record. Pakicetus, a fully terrestrial land mammal. In fact, the man who discovered Pakicetus, whom is J.G.M. Hans Thewissen, says this about them;
“Aquatic postcranial adaptations are pronounced in late Eocene basilosaurids and dorudontids, the oldest obligate aquatic cetaceans for which the entire skeleton is known, and therefore can be used to evaluate pakicetid morphology. Aquatic adaptations of basilosaurids and dorudontids include: presence of short neck vertebrae; thoracic and lumbar vertebrae that are similar in length; unfused sacral vertebrae; lack of a sacro-iliac joint; presence of a short tail with a ball-vertebra (a vertebra at the base of the fluke, with convex articular surfaces); broad fan-shaped scapula with anterior acromion and small supraspinous fossa; an ulna with a large and transversely flat olecranon; a wrist and distal forearm flattened in the plane of the hand; and tiny hind limbs. Pakicetids display none of these features” -Thewissen, et al., Nature, Vol. 413, 20 September 2001, “Skeletons of terrestrial cetaceans and the relationship of whales to artiodactyls”, page 227
“Taken together, the features of the skull indicate that pakicetids were terrestrial, and the locomotor skeleton displays running adaptations. Some features of the sense organs of pakicetids are also found in aquatic mammals, but they do not necessarily imply life in water. Pakicetids were terrestrial mammals, no more amphibious than a tapir.” -(J. G. M. Thewissen, E. M. Williams, L. J. Roe, & S. T. Hussain, “Skeletons of terrestrial cetaceans and the relationship ofwhales to artiodactyls,” Nature, Vol. 413:277-281 (September 20, 2001).)
So, according to the very person who discovered pakicetus, pakicetus was terrestrial, no more aquatic than a tapir. Yet, it evolved into a fully aquatic whale in 1,000,000-3,000,000 years, considering the time span between when pakicetus lived which could really be anywhere from 50,00,000 years and 52,000,000 years ago, to a fully aquatic ambulocetids that pops up around 49,500,000 years ago. To give him (Thewissen) his fair representation though, after about a decade since he discovered pakicetus, he was finally able to publish four overall similarities between pakicetus and whales, and these are apparently the only existing traits to connect pakicetus as a relative to whales at all in the first place (bummer)… Before this discovery, the fossil record seemed to look pretty good. You’d start out with a fully terrestrial land mammal, and then it looks to have become semi-aquatic and semi-terrestrial, and it eventually became the fully aquatic behemoth we have today. But we seem to have a problem now. A fully aquatic member of all these ‘whales’ pops up right in the beginning of the chain, even predating the fully terrestrial indohyus. The fossil record does not seem to indicate the gradual development of whales through a coherent evolutionary chain, rather the fossil record seems to show that the chain is all over the place, it looks something like this: fully terrestrial (pakicetus), fully aquatic (ambulocetids fossil discovery), fully terrestrial (indohyus), semi-aquatic (kutchicetus, rodhocetus), and then fully aquatic (blue whale). Rather than a coherent evolutionary chain, the fossils seem all over the place!
Speaking about similarities though, this is where the entire whale evolution fairy tale really gets problematic. Although there are four similarities between these two creatures, there are easily thousands of biological differences between pakicetus, the land raccoon, and fully developed aquatic whales. David Berlinski tried to count the number of differences, and stopped at 50,000. Richard Sternberg names 15 major evolutionary changes that must be made to pakicetus for it to become a whale (hilariously enough, a popular YouTube channel named Stated Clearly tried to respond to this list by giving one of the most unscientific, basic and scientifically illiterate responses of all time… For example, he admits pakicetus doesn’t have a ball vertebra, that whales do have ball vertebra, yet concluded that they did not need to evolve ball vertebra to become whales…) Now, what’s the problem with the fact evolution must evolve thousands of features for a pakicetus to turn it into a whale? Well…
According to Richard Sternberg’s calculations, as well as a published paper from 2008, for just two coordinated mutations to occur in a biological organism, it would require at least 40,000,000 years. Did anyone get that? 40,000,000 years. So, not only are there virtually zero viable transitional stages between hippos and whales, whale evolution is outright incapable of having occurred because of just how little time was available for the evolution to occur. According to the fossil record, pakicetus and whales are up to 3,000,000 years apart. Tens of thousands of changes must have occurred in those 3,000,000 years. Yet just two coordinated mutations require 40,000,000 years to be completed, more than ten times the overall time that displace pakicetus with whales. So, how are we going to conclude based on all these facts? Very simple. It didn’t happen. You don’t need a bunch of monkeys in lab coats to tell you where the science is pointing. Whale evolution did not occur. What impact does this have on evolutionary biology? Well, one could call it…