Oldest Sloth

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Oldest sloth fossil found, according to Reuters, 26 May 2009. Workers installing a water system beneath the concrete floor of a house in the Andean region of Espinar, southern Peru have discovered the fossil of a 10 feet (3.3m) long sloth. Parts of a giant armadillo were also found nearby. The fossils have been dated as five million years old – four million years older than smaller sloth fossils found in other parts of South America. Palaeontologist Rodolfo Salas, of Peru's Natural History Museum, who helped excavate the fossils commented: "This skeleton of the sloth is especially important as it is the first complete skeleton of its kind that is 5 million years old in the Americas. Previously, discoveries have been made of partial skeletons of similar animals, but from the Pleistocene era, meaning from the last million years." Salas also said the sloth was relatively small compared with other animals of its type and would help researchers better understand evolution of mammals in the Andes.

Editorial Comment: Darwin was impressed by the large fossil sloths he saw in Patagonian Chile in the 1830s. He argued that the fact that living sloths existed in a region where giant fossil sloths were found is one of the proofs of evolution. He concluded that sloths were not a created kind, and therefore Genesis is incorrect. The above authors follow the same line and fail to notice the obvious – these new sloth fossils will not help anyone understand evolution since they actually show sloths and armadillos were once larger than they are now, but they were still sloths and armadillos. The only change that has occurred since these fossils were buried is that sloths and armadillos have become smaller. This is not evolution, but fits the Biblical history of the world. Genesis tells us that the world started out very good with a uniformly mild, moist climate without any carnivores. There would have been plenty of lush vegetation for large sloths to eat and trees large enough for a 10 foot animal to hang about on, as sloths do. After Noah’s flood the climate progressively degraded and carnivores increased. As a result many large animals have died out and only small ones have survived. This is a good example of survival of the fittest, but it is not evolution. (Ref. mammals, megafauna, degeneration)

Evidence News 8 July 2009