Tuesday, April 1, 2014

#57 17-Year Cicadas

How many animals can count? Probably you have seen dogs and horses count, maybe even elephants. Of course they were trained by intelligent beings (namely humans) to do that. Also they are considered among the “higher animals”. But have any of them counted up to 17. You probably would not ever think than an insect can count, let alone count up to 17.

Even people might have a little trouble counting up to 17 if you counted so slow that it took you 17 years. That’s a little more difficult because you have to remember your place for a whole year before adding 1.

Well, let’s talk a little about the 17-Year Cicada. There are over 2,500 species of cicada that have been described and they are still counting. [1] Different cicada species emerge on different schedules. Some species come every year. Some every 13 years. But the most famous and largest “brood” comes every 17 years to the eastern part of the United States and may number 1 trillion individuals. As many as 1.5 million cicadas of this species may emerge from a single acre of land. 

They are 1½ inches long and basically harmless, just annoying. The adults which emerge do not eat at all. They will climb a tree, molt/shed their skin exposing their wings, then fly around to find a mate.

Within 6 weeks the females have all laid their eggs in a slit they carve in a tree and they all have died. When the eggs hatch, the larvae drop to the ground and burrow in, never to be seen again for 17 years.

By the way, the cicada emerge when the ground temperature is exactly 64 degrees. Also, the males emerge first and are out there with their very loud mating calls when the females come out. Females do not make noises. They all have two big red eyes and 3 smaller black ones. Each species has a distinct mating call which is made inside the male abdomen by “clicking” parts while a type of echo chamber magnifies it. The sounds can get as loud as 120 decibels, among the loudest of all insects. Wikipedia has some sample sounds. [2]

17 years is a really long lifespan for an insect. Even more amazing about Cicadas is that each generation only mates once, and it's at the very end of their life after 17 years. If evolution were true, you would only have 6 generations every 100 years so only 6 chances to get a beneficial mutation (which I have already detailed very rarely happens). In my article on “The Truth About Mutation” [3] I wrote how scientists have mutated fruit flies (on purpose using intelligence) for over 40 years and thousands of generations without ever producing a new species. If the scientists were studying the 17-Year Cicada, there would only be 2 generations in that same 40 years.

How did the 17-Year Cicada learn to count to 17? Have you ever heard of any case where a number emerged where there was no intelligent origin.

Let’s also remember that you have to have a male and a female for mating purposes to get a next generation. The male and female also have to both be alive in the same 6 week window and in the same vicinity on earth to be able to meet and mate. If one or the other stays in the ground longer by just 6 weeks in 17 years, then they can’t mate. If there is a mutation of the genome for the time the species stays under the ground, it has to be simultaneous in both male and female so they can still come out at the same time. How is that possible to be coordinated? Not only would the mutation in both the male and female have to be in the same direction (longer time or shorter time), but it would also have to be of exactly the same length of time in weeks. I suppose you could say there are billions of them and enough randomly could meet up for mating. But somehow you still have to get to the end point of all of them staying in the ground exactly 17 years at the end of the evolving.

Another problem is the temperature of 64 degrees. How could the male and female have mutated separately but still somehow decided jointly on that exact temperature and never mutate away from it? And here is an even bigger problem. How do they know what the temperature is? Are you able to tell me what the temperature is at any time or even when it hits 64 degrees? We all know the Cicadas stay underground for 17 years and then when the temperature hits 64 degrees, they come out. Oh and by the way, the males come out first. Also they have a mechanism for making a gigantic noise, which the females don’t do. So if you believe in evolution, you have to believe this is all accidental mutations and natural selection for them to have different body mechanisms, but the same timing.

Of course, we all know that males and females of all species are astoundingly different in body parts.  New research is showing they are even more different than was thought in the past. There is no possibility that they could have evolved slowly in incremental changes because they would have to have made complementary changes in the same generation and live in the same vicinity of each other, meet, and mate. The Theory of Evolution should have been debunked at the beginning. [4]

How does an insect tell that the temperature is 64 degrees above the ground? How did that kind of mechanism evolve? Even if you somehow had an organ to tell the temperature, it somehow has to be wired to the brain and send a signal. Once the signal arrives in the brain that the temperature is 64 degrees, so what? Somehow the brain has to figure out that it now has to dig upward, climb a tree, shed its skin, find a mate, copulate, and then die all within 6 weeks.

When an insect can do something that no human can do, even the greatest genius among us, there is no way to convince me that this evolved from nothing.

There must be a God. 

[3] Proof for God #27 The Truth About Mutation. http://101proofsforgod.blogspot.com/2013/02/27-truth-about-mutation.html

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