“The theory that birds are the equivalent of living dinosaurs and that dinosaurs were feathered is so full of holes that the creationists have jumped all over it, using the evolutionary nonsense of ‘dinosaurian science’ as evidence against the theory of evolution,” he said.
“To paraphrase one such individual, ‘This isn't science . . . This is comic relief.’” -->(!!!)<--

The Bird Whisperer

"...the emerging data suggest that certain sophisticated mental skills may be more ancient than had been assumed — or so adaptive that they evolved multiple times."

Ancient... as in inherited way back when? Then what about "mental skills" that enabled the ability to speak?

Somebody up and said that its "ok" to give reptiles credit for solving mazes, but not for developing speech. Cherrypicking how they interpret genes, based on their own prejudices, which has been aptly demonstrated :

REPTILE INTELLIGENCE UNDER-RATED. “Reptiles don’t really have great press,” said Gordon M. Burghardt, a comparative psychologist at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. “Certainly in the past, people didn’t really think too much of their intelligence. They were thought of as instinct machines.” But now that is beginning to change, thanks to a growing interest in “coldblooded cognition” and recent studies revealing that reptile brains are not as primitive as we imagined. The research could not only redeem reptiles but also shed new light on cognitive evolution.
Because reptiles, birds and mammals diverged so long ago, with a common ancestor that lived 280 million years ago, the emerging data suggest that certain sophisticated mental skills may be more ancient than had been assumed — or so adaptive that they evolved multiple times."
(Source), "Coldblooded Does Not Mean Stupid"

Which brings research that concludes *all intelligence* in birds and mammals, are necessarily, by some unknown law -- by default, all the result of "convergent evolution," and no benefit of the doubt, these genes, in some form were not derived from an ancient archosaurian common ancestor :

"More than 50 genes contributed to their convergent specialization and were enriched in motor control and neural connectivity functions. These patterns were not found in vocal nonlearners, but songbird RA was similar to layer 5 of primate motor cortex for another set of genes, supporting previous hypotheses about the similarity of these cell types between bird and mammal brains."
(Pfenning et al., "Convergent transcriptional specializations in the brains of humans and song-learning birds," Science, Vol. 346: 1256846-1 - 1256846-13 (December 12, 2014). )

Counter-argument by an I.D. proponent:

"So certain birds and humans use the same genes for vocalization -- but those genetic abilities are absent in non-human primates and birds without vocal learning? If not derived from a common ancestor, as they clearly were not,"


"...how did the genes get there? This kind of extreme convergent genetic evolution points strongly to intelligent design. The authors of the paper are, to be sure, not ID advocates. Yet they acknowledge how big the problem of convergent genetic evolution is becoming for evolutionary biology".

Not omitting how many species can vocalize (Source) and "speak".

"...the emerging data suggest that certain sophisticated mental skills may be more ancient than had been assumed — or so adaptive that they evolved multiple times."

Don't knock our feathered friends. They have an innate intelligence. Some birds are better friends than even dogs or cats.

LOL. Perhaps mammal brains evolved the way they did because they heard the beautiful birds sing, and wanted to sing along.

NJIT professor finds nothing cuckoo in serenading our feathered friends
"...Neon green, yellow and blue budgies circle around David Rothenberg’s head. He plays a few jazz licks on his clarinet. If the birds are paying attention to him, they may join in, riffing on his patterns, he says. Rothenberg, 48, has devoted much of his professional life to finding out just which creatures are willing to sing with him and what it might mean for music and science. In addition to playing in aviaries and to birds outside his home in Cold Spring, N.Y. — where, he says, feathered friends perch on the bushes near his garage to listen and sometimes join in — Rothenberg has also transmitted his music to whales, via underwater speakers. His next book, due out next year, focuses on insect sounds.
"You can actually understand nature through music," he says.
"It makes nature seem more frivolous, but, in fact, I think that’s evolution — survival of the interesting, not really the fittest."

I like his summary. That ... so called "convergent" evolution for why birds and mammals.... so "Blah." Nope. He sums up my sentiments:

"...People from the science world tend to think of animal communication as a simplified version of human interaction, like talking with a 3-year-old or a 1-year-old," says Sebastian. Rothenberg has come at a different perspective, he says, by using his musical ear to pick up patterns that may later evoke specific responses.
"We shouldn’t be looking for words — ‘chirp chirp’ doesn’t mean ‘there’s a worm over there.’ It’s more of an emotional communication.
"There’s a certain universality in music. Whether it’s a tear that comes to your eye in an Italian opera aria or a riff in a James Brown song that gets you off your seat, you don’t need to understand the words." Rothenberg is used to reactions of disbelief — and he himself wasn’t always sure the animal kingdom would respond to his art.
"I thought, ‘They don’t care about us,’ " he says.
Then one morning, while he enjoyed a little outdoor music-making, a white-crested laughing thrush started playing along. If people of different musical traditions can improvise together, he thought, why not go one step further?"

I think the "mutuality" -- the kindredness -- is innate -- shared between mammals, birds, and many species that have been noted with communication skills to some degree or another (Koko the ape -- Mishka the dog -- and many others)... and not merely "convergent evolution" to explain away everything that doesn't fit the neat little row of status quo's boring explanation.

Communication is much more than simply "55 genes". (Source) There was actually a debate whether or not Neanderthal could speak?

Mishka the dog speaks... and some people may try to deny this. As the Bird Whisperer above explained, language / communication, "We shouldn’t be looking for words — ‘chirp chirp’ doesn’t mean ‘there’s a worm over there.’ It’s more of an emotional communication."

Language... intelligence... is much more complex... if not arrogant, to presume human communication is "the end of all things". What about whales?

Speech production.

"...Most people believe that a human’s ability to communicate is far more complex and evolved than that of other animals, but cetaceans may have us beat."

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Interesting Related Links

For the Anti-Creationism Darwinist Among Us

Thales of Miletus

My Other Blog:
Genesis in the Ancient World
"The Jews integrated into Greek culture around 300 BC. Notably, much of the modern Biblical literature is actually Greek. Enlightened Greek thought becomes apparent in the opening of Genesis. "One of the first evolutionary theories was proposed by Thales of Miletus (640–546 BC) in the province of Ionia on the coast near Greece followed by Anaximander (550 B.C.) who speculated that life evolved from the water; lower forms of life, in a very primitive precursor to evolutionary theory."

Namely this *ouch!*

Evolution and Paleontology in the Ancient World
"...For Anaximander, the world had arisen from an undifferentiated, indeterminate substance, the apeiron. The Earth, which had coalesced out of the apeiron, had been covered in water at one stage, with plants and animals arising from mud. Humans were not present at the earliest stages; they arose from fish. This poem was quite influential on later thinkers, including Aristotle.
Had Anaximander looked at fossils? Did he study comparative fish and human anatomy? Unfortunately, we have no way of knowing what evidence Anaximander used to support his ideas. His theory bears some resemblance to evolutionary theory, but also seems to have been derived from various Greek myths, such as the story of Deucalion and Pyrrha, in which peoples or tribes are born from the Earth or from stones. His concept of the apeiron seems similar to the Tao of Chinese philosophy and religion, and to the "formless and void" Earth of the Hebrew creation account and other creation myths. However, even though Anaximander's ideas drew on the religious and mythical ideas of his time, he was still one of the first to attempt an explanation of the origin and evolution of the cosmos based on natural laws."

(Source, ucmp.berkeley.edu History)

[Sadly, what the site fails to mention is that the oldest known biblical manuscripts date no earlier than around 300 B.C., therefore, Anaximander (610-545 B.C.) could not have based any of his concepts on Biblical Hebrew. However it can be deduced, the Hebrew Genesis account was borrowed from mainstream Greek philosophy.] [The analysis by Harvard and several other University sources are quite impressive: (Scala Naturae of the Bible, Charles Darwin and Ancient Greek Philosophy)]