On Supersonic Kangaroos

Since yesterday was Charles Darwin’s 200th anniversary (and the subject of my post), my contrarian nature led to this follow-up post.

Answers in Genesis (AiG) is an organization dedicated to providing answers through the book of Genesis. AiG believes in a young earth, a literal understanding of biblical accounts to explain creation, and also operates the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky (near Cincinnati).

For the purpose of this post I’ll use these AiG positions:

  • Two land animals of every kind were on Noah’s Ark
  • Pangea, the supercontinent, existed
  • Continental drift rates proposed by Dr John Baumgardner, a scientist quoted by AiG

Situation

The crows-fly distance from Mt. Arafat, Turkey (possible location of Noah’s Ark) to Pemba, Mozambique (a current city close to wear the Australian continent would have separated from Africa) = 5800 km (5,800,000 m)

The maximum kangaroo hop is 30 ft, or 9 m

If continental drift occurred at 0.37 m/sec, to drift 9 m takes about 24 seconds

Therefore, a kangaroo on Noah’s Ark would have to travel 241,667 m/sec to be able to reach the point (Pemba) in time before the plates are too far apart. (5,800,000 m/24 sec)

Since the speed of sound @ 20 degrees Celcius is 343 m/s, the kangaroo travelled at mach 704 —- which is more than 30 times the maximum velocity of the space shuttle (7.68 km/sec) — thus not supersonic, but hypersonic!

Two Questions

  • Since a wombat is slower than a kangaroo, did the 2 kangaroos carry wombats in their pouch upon leaving the ark?
  • Did kangaroos evolve into something slower?