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?

25 thoughts on “On Supersonic Kangaroos

  1. Heh ‘Roos may look stupd but obviously after a dish of too many pulses their flatulence provided the right fuel air mix to provide the added propulsion.

    As for the wombats well they’re lazy so and so’s more likely to stowaway than walk themselves.

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  2. Oy vey. Believing in a literal Genesis will provide many more math problems than this, but it’s a great exercise in explaiining the impossiblility of Noah’s Ark, etc.. The simple answer is that your title is correct! There were supersonic kangaroos!
    The gravity of denial makes fighting uphill even harder. I have to say I really enjoy your delicate and nuanced approach to these and other questions.

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  3. Hypersonic kangaroos! The female must have had an enormous pouch to carry not only a pair of wombats, but also a pair of koalas, a pair of wallabies, dingoes…I could go on…

    And of course they were fast…they managed to out run the lions and tigers for 40 days, didn’t they? 🙂

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    • Doggy,
      I knew you would like this one. Nope – I haven’t seen the documentary. BTW – the Creation Museum is a bit less than an hour’s drive for me … and NO … I haven’t gone and don’t plan on it.

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        • Well then … I meet you at the airport (CVG), and then have a farewell lunch with you before going to the museum … which happens to be near the airport. Oh … wait a few years and you could include a trip to the Noah’s Ark theme park.

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  4. Um…so
    A – why did the continents stop moving that fast?
    B – When they did, why didn’t everything on top of the plates get slide right off into the ocean?
    Oh! Is that what happened to Atlantis and Camelot?

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  5. Pingback: Flashbacks: On the Science-Religion Interchange | A Frank Angle

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