The Origin of Flight According to Evolutionists Birds and Dinosaur The Unique Structure of Avian Lungs Bird Feathers and Reptile Scales The Design of Feathers
The Archaeopteryx Misconception The Teeth and Claws of Archaeopteryx
Archaeopteryx and Other Ancient Bird Fossils Archaeoraptor: The Dino-Bird Hoax
The Origin of Insects The Origin of Mammals The Myth of Horse Evolution

 Bird Feathers and Reptile Scales

Another impassable gulf between birds and reptiles is feathers, which are peculiar to birds. Reptile bodies are covered with scales, and those of birds with feathers. The hypothesis that bird feathers evolved from reptile scales is completely unfounded, and is indeed disproved by the fossil record, as the evolutionary paleontologist Barbara Stahl admits:


The scales that cover reptiles' bodies are totally different from bird feathers. Unlike feathers, scales do not extend under the skin, but are merely a hard layer on the surface of the animal's body. Genetically, biochemically and anatomically, scales bear no resemblance to feathers. This great difference between the two again shows that the scenario of evolution from reptiles to birds is unfounded.

How [feathers] arose initially, presumably from reptiles scales, defies analysis... It seems, from the complex construction of feathers, that their evolution from reptilian scales would have required an immense period of time and involved a series of intermediate structures. So far, the fossil record does not bear out that supposition.116

The Sinosauropteryx fossil, announced by evolutionary paleontologists to be a "feathered dinosaur," but which subsequently turned out to be no such thing.

A. H. Brush, a professor of physiology and neurobiology at the University of Connecticut, accepts this reality, although he is himself an evolutionist: "Every feature from gene structure and organization, to development, morphogenesis and tissue organization is different [in feathers and scales]."117 Moreover, Professor Brush examines the protein structure of bird feathers and argues that it is "unique among vertebrates."118

There is no fossil evidence to prove that bird feathers evolved from reptile scales. On the contrary, feathers appear suddenly in the fossil record, Professor Brush observes, as an "undeniably unique" character distinguishing birds.119 Besides, in reptiles, no epidermal tissue has yet been detected that provides a starting point for bird feathers.120

Many fossils have so far been the subject of "feathered dinosaur" speculation, but detailed study has always disproved it. The prominent ornithologist Alan Feduccia writes the following in an article called "On Why Dinosaurs Lacked Feathers":

Feathers are features unique to birds, and there are no known intermediate structures between reptilian scales and feathers. Notwithstanding speculations on the nature of the elongated scales found on such forms as Longisquama ... as being featherlike structures, there is simply no demonstrable evidence that they in fact are.121

116 Barbara J. Stahl, Vertebrate History: Problems in Evolution, Dover, 1985, pp. 349-350. (emphasis added)
117 A. H. Brush, "On the Origin of Feathers," Journal of Evolutionary Biology, vol. 9, 1996, p.132.
118 A. H. Brush, "On the Origin of Feathers," Journal of Evolutionary Biology, vol. 9, 1996, p.131.
119 A. H. Brush, "On the Origin of Feathers," Journal of Evolutionary Biology, vol. 9, 1996, p.133.
120 A. H. Brush, "On the Origin of Feathers," Journal of Evolutionary Biology, vol. 9, 1996, p.131.
121 Alan Feduccia, "On Why Dinosaurs Lacked Feathers," The Beginning of Birds, Eichstatt, West Germany: Jura Museum, 1985, p. 76. (emphasis added)