Regular readers of this blog know that I love nature. I love the intricacies of how God created it all for His good and His glory. I love the macro. These are the large items in nature and the large complex systems- the sunsets and meteors and aurora borealis, the green flash, gravity, earthquakes, and black holes. I love the micro. These are the small systems- atoms and their electrons, mollusks, insect anatomy, rocks and the minerals they contain.
Regular readers also know that as a bible-believing fundamentalist, I adhere to the bible’s presentation of the creation in Genesis. It happened by the Word of God, over six days, and that’s that. And since God created the world, He created all its intricacies. The plants, insects, animals and humans and their complex interactions, whether symbiotic or parasitic.
Here are some examples of the intricacies I especially enjoy. These could not have evolved, but were made by the Ancient of Days who called them into being. In this first example of His creativity, I note that though the headline says the secret is unveiled the article actually says that ‘scientists are one step closer to unlocking the secret’:
Source Of Spider Silk’s Extreme Strength Unveiled
“The strength of spider dragline silk exceeds that of any material produced in laboratories, by far. All attempts to manufacture threads of similar strength have failed thus far,” explains Professor Horst Kessler, Carl von Linde Professor at the Institute for Advanced Study at the TU Muenchen (TUM-IAS). In collaboration with the workgroup of Prof. Thomas Scheibel, who was a researcher at the TU Muenchen until 2007 and who now holds a chair of the Institute of Biomaterials at the Universitaet Bayreuth, Professor Kessler’s team has been researching for years to unveil the secret of spider silk.” … “How do spiders manage to first store the silk proteins in the silk gland and to then assemble them in the spinning passage in a split second to form threads with these extraordinary characteristics? And what exactly gives the threads their tremendous tensile strength?”
The scientists explain what happens inside a spider when it is not spinning its web:
“Spider threads consist of long chains of thousands of repeating sequences of protein molecules. These silk proteins are stored in the silk gland in a highly concentrated form until they are needed. The long chains with their repeating sequences of protein molecules are initially unordered and must not get too close to each other as they would immediately clump up. Only in the spinning passage, just before being used, are the threads oriented parallel to each other and form so-called micro crystallites that are, in turn, assembled to stable threads with cross links.”
Right. Like that evolved. How did the spider evolve its proteins in such a way that it could tell them to order themselves into a spinning passage in perfect harmony and tensile strength that escapes anything humans can reproduce? What a great God we have to create a universe that has a perfectly ordered and functioning system in all things, in everything, including the silk spider!
Here is a snippet of the symbiosis that occurs between a moth and a moth mite:
“In one particular symbiotic relationship between mites and moths, mites of the genus Dicrocheles infest one “ear” of a moth. The moth’s ear has three chambers, one of which is separated from the other two by the eardrum. The mites crawl into the moth’s ear to lay their eggs, and in the process puncture the delicate eardrum, leaving the moth deaf in that ear. However, the mites are careful to colonize only one ear, because if they were to colonize both ears, the moth would be fully deaf and would be unable to hear approaching bats. The bat would eat the mites along with the moth.”
Dr. Asher Treat is the foremost expert on moth ear mites. He wrote in the Journal of Entomology 1957:
Good question indeed. Though the mites didn’t know of the danger of infesting both moth’s ears, they avoid it completely and universally by only infesting one ear. How did that come about? Not by evolution. God is wonderful indeed.
Consider the pesky barnacle. It adheres to a boat’s hull and when enough of them accumulate, they slow the craft to nail biting, foot stomping frenzies. When we scraped the barnacles off our sailboat, the average speed over ground increased by a knot and a half. Then again, if you ever scraped barnacles, you know how hard they are to get off. Their cement is legendary.
“Barnacle cement, the substance the animals use to glue themselves to ships’ bottoms and to rocks, has attracted the interest of doctors. A layer of this cement three tenthousandths of an inch thick over one square inch will support a weight of 7000 pounds. It is even stronger than epoxy cement. At temperatures above 6000°F the glue will soften but not melt, and at 380°F the cement will not crack. It does not dissolve in most strong acids, alkalies, organic solvents, or water. If man could learn to manufacture this cement, which barnacles have been using for millions of years, it could be used to mend broken bones and hold fillings in teeth.”
The Journal of Biological Chemistry says that for the barnacle “To adhere effectively, the cement needs to accomplish several functions such as coagulation, displacement of water from the substratum, establishment of interfacial contact, and molecular attraction between dissimilar materials.”
JPK Industries in the UK writes,
Right. Like that evolved.
I always have loved the beauty of shells. They are stunning in their delicacy and colorful beauty. Did you know that when a mollusk is born, its apex part of the shell is born with it? This starter part of the shell is called the protoconch.
It is a photo of the Ass’s Ear Abalone, and this is what a mature shell looks like:
As the animal inside the shell grows the animal secretes exactly enough calcium (in beautiful patterns too) that he will need to live at the upcoming size in the chamber. Like this Turritella