Dinosaur Extinction
Home   Site Index
Origins Facts Check
Myths of Evolution
NAPP Summary

When did dinosaurs become extinct? Sounds like a simple straight forwarded question, but today some believe that birds are descended from dinosaurs or that dinosaurs were types of birds. So based on these beliefs dinosaurs could still exist even though there is little to no clear, unambiguous evidence to support this bird theory. Also, today many old earth advocates claim that the last of all large dinosaur species went extinct during a Cretaceous–Paleogene (K–Pgextinction event about 65 million years ago (Ma). Although few would question whether large terrestrial dinosaurs such as T-Rex are extinct, this 65 Ma estimate is not based on verifiable scientific evidence but an unproven set of assumptions. Good science is based on evidence not assumptions.

Recent discoveries such as endogenic carbon-14 and soft tissue in dinosaur bones provides empirical evidence supporting the theory that the last of the large dinosaurs formerly roaming the earth died out merely thousands not Ma. Key to young extinction is the unbiased use of carbon-14 dating. Before presenting these recent discoveries, a quick tour of dating assumptions and some aspects of carbon-14 dating is in order.

Dating Assumptions

“In the late eighteenth century... it was generally believed that the earth came into creation only around six thousand years earlier.” [1] This view began to slowly change based on a set of assumptions including: (1) the earth’s geological features took immense time to develop based on the slow processes observed today, (2) all life evolved (macro evolution) very slowly from more simpler forms over hundreds of millions of years, and (3) the relative age of a stratum can be determined by the type of fossils it contains. Old earth advocates then assigned dates to the various strata making up the geological column by how long they believed it would take for the various strata to form and the various life forms to evolve.


Radioactivity was discovered in 1896 and in the early 1900s it began to be used in radiometric dating. All radiometric dating methods are based on a minimum of three assumptions: (1) the initial conditions are known, (2) the rate of radioactive decay has always been constant, and (3) parent and daughter isotopes are in a closed system (i.e. neither parent nor daughter isotopes have been lost from system or conversely added from outside the system). Evidence for one or more periods of accelerated radioactive decay is presented in Evidence 10 in this article.


Restrictions placed on science by the old earth philosophy, meant that only long half-life radioactive isotopes were used to date items conventionally thought to be Ma or older. These isotopes yielded dates of billions of years for the universe and the earth.  The various sedimentary strata were also dated albeit indirectly yielding from present to 4.6 billion years. Although dates derived by long half-life isotopes are often quoted as fact, there is no way to prove them as fact.


Substantial disagreements of hundreds of millions and even billions of years are common between dates derived from different kinds of long half-life isotopes. [2] [3] Also, long half-life isotopes have yielded dates hundreds of thousands to billions of years older than known dates for historically observed volcanic eruptions. This is the case for andesite from eruptions of Mt. Ngauruhoe in New Zealand. [4][5] K-Ar dates for minerals from the dacite lava dome of the 1986 Mt. St. Helens eruption ranged from 0.34+/-06 Ma to 2.8+/-0.6 Ma. [6]  

Carbon -14 Dating

In 1950, Libby proposed a way to date organic materials with carbon-14 (14C). Carbon-14 has a half-life of 5,730 years +/-. With the advent of the ultrasensitive accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) in the early 1980s, and advances in this technology, organic artifacts up to around 50,000 to 60,000 radiocarbon years (about 10 14C half-lives) can theoretically be dated. That is if any organic artifacts that old do indeed exist. Without getting into all the details, the calculated radiocarbon years from measurements are not actual years but must be calibrated (corrected). The amount of correction and whether it is positive or negative depends on the assumptions made.

Old earth advocates based on uniformitarian assumptions have developed radiocarbon age to calendar calibration curves. One such curve from INTCAL 13 for the Northern Hemisphere adds about 4,000 years to the uncalibrated uniformitarian radiocarbon years between 20,000 and 40,000.  Young earth advocates that believe in creationism disagree believing the oldest calibrated ages should be around 4,500 to 6,000 years maximum. In either event, the radiocarbon date corrections based on current old earth or young earth assumptions will not exceed tens of thousands of years for the oldest organic artifacts for which 14C can be measured.  Unless otherwise noted, all radiocarbon dates in this article are uncalibrated.

One common criticism of the 14C dating method is the potential of contamination that can obscure the true age of the organic sample. Laboratories (beta and AMS) that perform 14C dating are aware of this potential and utilize highly effective techniques including acid and alkaline washes to remove all potential sources of contamination. Yet 14C continues to be detected in samples that supposedly should be 14C dead by uniformitarian old earth assumptions. This led to numerous earnest investigations over a period of at least 20 years and “has generated scores of peer-reviewed papers in the standard radiocarbon literature... Most of these papers acknowledge that most of the 14C in the samples studied appear to be intrinsic to the samples themselves.” [7] Even then, often when the dating results do not agree with the researchers’ preconceived ideas, the results are blamed on contamination and ignored.   

When did dinosaurs become extinct?

What conclusion does the evidence favor? What follows are 11 types of evidence for a recent dinosaur extinction. 

Evidence 1 – All Items with Carbon have Detectable Carbon-14

The presence of intrinsic carbon whether organic or inorganic in nature with detectable 14C places a limit on the age of that material to thousands of years.   

1.    AMS laboratories have been unable to find any materials containing carbon that are 14C dead; this includes materials supposedly millions and billions of years old.  But, if the whole earth were originally made of 14C, not one atom of it would remain after a million years. [8] According to old earth advocates the answer must be recent contamination.

2.    Natural diamonds are the hardest natural materials on earth and their very dense rigid structure is highly resistant to outside contamination. They are formed under extremely high temperatures and pressures from carbon deep within the earth’s mantle.  Natural diamonds cannot be dated by 14C decay because it does not come from an organic source so the initial quantity of 14C is unknown. Even if 14C atoms were there when the diamonds were formed, conventional thinking is that diamonds are so old that they would be 14C dead because of its short half-life of 5,730 years. Using old earth conventional assumptions, only diamonds with inclusions containing sufficient quantities of a long half-life radioactive isotope as Re, Rb and Sm are radiometrically dated.[9] This latter condition is rare.


To conventionally date samples of diamonds from the Kimberly mines in South Africa, single identical grains of garnet or clinopyroxene inclusions from multiple diamonds were grouped to make a large enough sample to be tested. Based on long half-life radioactive isotopes in these inclusions “[s]ome of the Kimberley diamonds were more than three billion years old.” [10] Another conventional source states “[d]iamondiferous kimberlites older than 550 Ma are rare, and most are younger than 150 Ma; the diamonds they carry are older than 1,000 Ma and may be as old as 3,500 Ma” [11] Yet, when the RATE Group had 12 diamonds (5 from kimberlite pipes and 7 from placer deposits) tested by a highly respected AMS laboratory, they all contained 14C well within the detection limit of the AMS equipment even after the laboratory’s assumed background has been subtracted. [12] [13] Significant carbon-14 was found in diamonds that by conventional thinking should be 14C dead.


1.    Contamination:

a.    Trace amounts of heavy isotopes including uranium, thorium, and radium atoms are present in some diamonds. “[T]he generation of carbon-14 by the decay of heavy nuclei results in an amount at least 100,000 times less than the actual C-14 found in” the RATE diamond samples. [14] Contamination from this source would therefore be insignificant.

b.    Calculations show that nuclear reactions at the rates observed today in which neutrons enter the diamond and convert 14N or 13C to 14C would result in 14C amounts that are at least several orders of magnitude less than the range or levels actually measured. [15] [16] Contamination from this source would therefore be negligible by today’s decay rates.

2.    All diamonds tested for the RATE Group were about 0.25 carats or 50 mg. [17] The initial 14C in these diamonds is unknown. If a 0.25 carat diamond was formed from 100% 14C atoms, it will completely decay using the uniformitarian assumption to non-radioactive nitrogen (14N) atoms (no diamond remaining) in about 412,600 years (72 half-lives).

3.    Nitrogen is fixed in the diamond matrix and the concentration of 14N varies from diamond to diamond. About 98% of natural diamonds have “concentrations from tens to several hundred parts per million (ppm) nitrogen atoms while the rest could have concentration at 10 ppm.” [18] The average 14N concentrations for peridotitic and eclogitic diamonds are 200 and 300 ppm, respectively. [19] If a diamond contains 14C which decays to 14N, then it is reasonable to assume that at least a portion of the 14N present must have come from 14C decay. The initial concentration of 14N in a diamond is unknown but assuming all the 14N in a diamond comes from 14C decay will give a rough approximation of its maximum possible age. For a 0.25 carat diamond with all its 500 ppm 14N atoms from the decay of an equal number of 14C atoms, the diamonds age under the uniformitarian decay assumption (half-life of 5,730 year) would be roughly a maximum of about 350,000 years (61 half-lives). Although this example may greatly inflate the diamonds age, the 350,000 years is much younger than the three billion years from the long half-life isotopes in the garnet or clinopyroxene inclusions mentioned in Evidence 1.2.

4.    “The idea that diamonds take millions of years to form is an assumption based on a naturalistic worldview that assumes slow and gradual processes.” [20] This assumption has been falsified (disproved) by the short time it takes to make synthetic diamonds. “It takes 7-10 days to grow a 1 carat lab diamond, and about a month to grow a 3-carat diamond.” [21]

5.    The extreme anomaly in diamond ages between the supposed billions of years for long half-life isotopes and the presence of 14C in diamonds which should be 14C dead by conventional assumptions can be explained by either one or a combination of both of the following:

a.    Some of the supposed daughter products for the long half-life isotopes were there initially, and/or

b.    There have been one or more periods of highly accelerated radioactive decay. Some evidence for this possibility will be presented in Evidence 10 of this article.

Evidence 2 - Dinosaur Tracks, Ammonites, Wood and Carbon-14

Sedimentary formations are primarily dated by the index fossils (e.g. ammonites and belemnites) that they contain. Even in those cases where supposed ages can be determined by long half-life radioactive isotopes, those ages are usually discounted in favor of the index fossils. Many sedimentary formations also contain fossilized and/or carbonized wood that is almost never tested because it is assumed to be so old as to be 14C dead.  Evidence from 14C dating of fossil wood and associated ammonites, fossil wood and belemnites (not tested), and fossil wood and dinosaur tracks supporting a young age for ammonites, belemnites and large dinosaur extinction includes the following:  

1.    Many sauropod and tridactyl dinosaur tracks have been found in the limestone bed of the Paluxy River near the town of Glen Rose, Texas. [22] This limestone is a part of the Glen Rose Formation that has been dated at about 115 to 105 Ma under the conventional Geologic Time Scale (GTS) based on the type of ammonite index fossils found within the formation.  Drill cuttings from cores in the Glen Rose limestone have found abundant carbonized wood fragments through its composition.  Over the years, researchers have had some of these fragments carbon-14 tested yielding dates of only a few thousand years old. [23]

2.    Four fossil ammonites and four pieces of fossilized wood were found in the Lower Cretaceous mudstones of the Budden Canyon Formation in the Cottonwood District near Redding in northern California. Each ammonite to be tested was found either touching or almost touching a piece of fossilized wood also to be tested.  However, the samples from two of the ammonites were too small for testing. AMS testing yielded radiocarbon years of 36,400 ± 350 and 48,710 ± 930 years BP (before present) for the remaining two ammonites and between 32,780 ± 230 and 42,390 ± 510 years BP for the four pieces of fossil wood. This Lower Cretaceous mudstone is conventionally dated at approximately 112 to120 Ma. [24]

3.    A portion of the Marlstone Rock Bed in England is exposed in the Horton Quarries at Edge Hill near Ratney. This marlstone is conventionally dated as Jurassic at 189 Ma based on the index fossils it contains. Ammonite and belemnite index fossils were found in the marlstone in this quarry along with fossilized wood.   Three pieces of fossilized wood were taken for 14C testing by AMS laboratories; one sample was found sitting on top of a belemnite.  From the structure of the fossil woods, it is evident that they are not from roots but probably branches.  The fossil wood easily splintered demonstrating that petrification was not complete. Calculated ages from AMS results for the fossil wood yielded radiocarbon dates from 20,700 ± 1,200 to 28,820 ± 350 years BP far less than the 189 Ma. [25]


1.    Contamination:

a.    “AMS labs prefer to carbon date charcoal and wood because these materials do not need complex pretreatment.” [26]

b.     "[A]ny soluble inorganic carbonate carbon in the groundwater would not have exchanged with the insoluble organic carbon in the wood, because the two forms of carbon are incompatible."[27]

c.    Fossil wood is particularly easy to decontaminate as any carbonate contamination on the outside or inside of the wood fibers can be easily removed by the severe demineralizing treatment of hot and cold strong acid washes used by the laboratory.[28] Therefore, decontaminated fossil wood with sufficient endogenic carbon present is an ideal candidate for 14C dating.

2.   According to the radiocarbon dates obtained from the fossil wood and ammonite shell samples in Evidence 2, the index ammonite and belemnite fossils are only thousands not the millions of years old assumed by the conventional GTS.

3.    Further support for a young age for the above sauropod and tridactyl dinosaur tracks comes from the fossilized Acrocanthosaurus bone in Evidence 4. This fossil was found in the Glen Rose Formation not far from these tracks and was 14C dated only thousands of years old.

Evidence 3 – Fossilized, Coalified, and Carbonized Wood with Carbon-14

Wood 14C dated from the conventional Tertiary, Cretaceous, Triassic, and Permian periods all yielded ages in the thousands. Large dinosaurs according to conventional assumptions lived between the end of the Triassic period to about the end of the Cretaceous period. This means that they lived and died out thousands of years ago not millions. Evidence supporting this assertion is as follows:


1.     In 1947, a small piece of coalified wood 3 cm long was found 1,700 ft below the surface in the workings of Cresson Mine (gold), Cripple Creek Colorado. This mine is situated in a "volcanic complex that is supposedly 32 million years old (Oligocene), as determined by Ar-Ar radioisotope dating." A sample of this coalified wood was carefully packaged, labeled and submitted with the required documents to Professor Roelf Beukens at the IsoTrace Radiocarbon Laboratory at the University of Toronto in Ontario, Canada. The provenance of the sample was not given. After decontamination protocols, AMS analysis indicated the sample was 41,260 ± 540 radiocarbon years BP not the supposed 32 Ma by Ar-Ar radioisotope dating. [29]

2.    The Newcastle Coal Measures within the Sydney Basin of Australia and associated mudstone have been conventionally assigned Upper Permian (250 Ma) based on the plant fossils found within. Small pieces of coalified bark from a stump found resting on top of one of the coal seams and encased in mudstone was AMS dated by a reputable internationally recognized laboratory at 33,700 ± 400 radiocarbon years BP. The coalified bark sample had a d13CPDB value of -27.2 ‰. [30]

3.   “Fossilised wood found entombed in a Tertiary basalt flow at Crinum in central Queensland yielded a 14C ‘age’ of about 37,500 years BP and a d13CPDB value of –25.69 ‰ consistent with terrestrial plant organic carbon, and ruling out contamination... The olivine basalt yielded an averaged K-Ar ‘model age’ of 47.5 Ma, excessively older than the expected ‘age’ of 30 Ma due to excess 40Ar”. [31]

4.   In 2013, a piece of semi soft peat-like wood was found in the Late Cretaceous Horseshoe Canyon Formation of Alberta, Canada near Drumheller. AMS analysis of this wood yielded 40,040 ± 160 radiocarbon years BP. This sample had a d13CPDB value of -24.1 ‰. [32]

5.   A piece of carbonized wood was found “ensconced within a small shaley slab” from the 290 Ma conventionally dated Boskovice Furrow in the Czech Republic.  AMS analysis dated it at 48,160 ± 330 radiocarbon years BP. This sample had a d13CPDB value of -22.7 ‰. [33]

6.    In 1986, fresh looking fossil wood was found in a “lignitic coal-bearing member of the Buchanan Lake Formation, Nunavut, Canada” conventionally dated as Eocene (about 56 to 33.9 Ma).  A core sample tested 39,720 ± 270 radiocarbon years BP.This sample had a d13CPDB value of -22.2 ‰. [34]

7.     In 1997, “a large finger-sized piece of fossil wood was found in a Hawksbury Sandstone slab just cut from the quarry face at Bundanoon,” New South Wales, Australia. “The Hawksbury Sandstone has been assigned a Middle Triassic ‘age’ of around 225-230 million years by most geologists.” A piece of this fossil wood was sent to an internationally recognized commercial laboratory for AMS 14C analysis. The laboratory was not given information on the fossil wood’s supposed evolutionary age or exactly where it came from to avoid laboratory bias. The analysis yielded 33,720 ± 430 radiocarbon years BP after the laboratory staff corrected for a d13CPDB value of –24.0 ‰ obtained. [35]


1.    Contamination:

a.   See Note 1 for Evidence 2.

b.    “Modern fungi or bacteria derive their carbon from the organic material they live on and don’t get it from the atmosphere, so they have the same ‘age’ as their host.” [36] Thus, modern fungi and bacteria could not affect the radiocarbon age of the organic material.

2.    The d13CPDB values (-27.2, –25.69, -24.1, -22.7, -22.2, and –24.0 ‰) above for isotopic 13C fractionation are indicative of and consistent with C3 terrestrial plants including trees.

3.   Although the conventional dating on these 7 samples varied from 32 to 290 Ma, the radiocarbon dates yielded nearly the same dates in thousands before present. Based on this evidence and the other contained in this article, it is doubtful that any of these periods of the conventional geological time scale (GTS) are real.

Evidence 4 - Dinosaur Bones and Carbon-14

From 1998 to 2014, researchers sent 27 bone samples to various laboratories for 14C testing without revealing that they were dinosaur bones. This is known as a blind experiment to prevent bias in the testing or interpretation of the results. Laboratory results then were reported by the researchers in various publications. All the dinosaur bone samples had measurable 14C sufficient for dating. The results are summarized as follows:

1.   The Paleochronology group had 19 dinosaur bone samples tested: 16 by AMS and 3 by beta decay.  Three of the laboratories were in the United States and one in Germany. The number of samples per dinosaur were: Allosaurus (1), Apatosaurus (1), Acrocanthosaurus (4), hadrosaur #1 (2), hadrosaur #2 (3), hadrosaur #3 (1), Psittacosaurus (1), Stegosaurus (1), Triceratops #1 (3), and Triceratops #2 (2). All the samples were from the Cretaceous period of the GTS, except the Allosaurus, Apatosaurus, and Stegosaurus were from the Late Jurassic period.  Results indicated that all samples were from a minimum 22,020 ± 50 to a maximum of 39,230 ± 140 radiocarbon years BP. [37]

2.    Researchers Brian Thomas and Vance Nelson attempted to test the Paleochronology groups results. They obtained 7 additional dinosaur bones and had 8 samples AMS tested by a single laboratory.  The number of samples per dinosaur bone were: hadrosaur ICR (2), hadrosaur ADM (1), Edmontosaurus sp. (1), Edmontosaurus sp. (1), ceratopsian (1), ceratopsian (1) andTriceratops horridus (1). All samples were from the GTS Cretaceous period. AMS analysis indicated that all samples were from a minimum of 20,850 ± 90 to 41,010 ± 220 radiocarbon years BP. [38]


1.    Contamination:

a.    Old earth critics of these 14C dates for dinosaur bones will inevitably claim contamination because these results do not match their world view. Some minor recent in situ contamination cannot be completely ruled out. Yet, this potential contamination appears to be so small as to not significantly change the results.   Young earth creationists also have problems with these dates being larger than the 6,000 years ago for biblical creation. Their explanations for these anomalies include the possibility that the initial 14C/C ratio was much smaller than assumed and accelerated radioactive decay occurred one or more times in the past.

b.    Collectively these two research groups had bioapatite in 12 samples 14C date tested. There has been a controversy regarding the reliability of using bioapatites to obtain 14C dates as bone apatite can isotropically exchange carbon with dissolved carbonates present in the environmental fluids. Depending on the source of the carbonates, the bone or tooth may appear older or younger. However, it has recently been demonstrated that these secondary diagenetic carbonates can be separated from bioapatite, providing the carbon in the samples has not degraded completely. This separation can be accomplished by proper pretreatment of bone and teeth samples with diluted acetic acid in vacuum.[39]

c.     “[S]oluble versus insoluble forms of carbon remain incompatible regardless of depth or hydration levels. For example, carbon containing collagen protein is insoluble in water and has not been shown to readily react with dissolved carbonates.”[40]

d.    The Mammuthus primigenius is an extinct elephant that has been extensively studied. One study was reported online in 2012 with a data set from 1323 different Mammuthus primigenius remains. This data set included sample descriptions, find latitudes and longitudes, AMS lab sample codes, and calibrated radiocarbon dates per IntCal09. Collagen from about 720 samples tested by 30 AMS laboratories yielded radiocarbon years BP older than 24,850 after calibration, ignoring the sigma standard deviation. [41] This is almost equivalent to the minimum 20,850 ± 90 uncalibrated radiocarbon years BP for the above dinosaur bones. Therefore, it is a logical possibility that dinosaurs and Mammuthus lived together on earth at the same time only thousands of years ago.

2.   All 31 dinosaur bones 14C dated only thousands of years old not millions.


Evidence 5 – Mosasaurus and Carbon-14

Mosasaurus is an aquatic reptile that lived supposedly by conventional thinking about 82 to 66 Ma during the Late Cretaceous and went extinct with the large terrestrial dinosaurs as a result of the Cretaceous–Paleogene (K–Pgextinction event. [42] In 2011, a Mosasaurus humerus from the Cretaceous Maastrichtan Ciply Phosphatic Chalk of Belgium was !4C dated at 24,600 years BP. The researchers stated “the amount of finite carbon was small... and most likely reflected bacterial activity near the outer surface of bone (although no bacterial proteins or hopanoids were detected...)” [43]


1.    Contamination:

a.    The bacterial assumption for the source of the 14C appears to be an attempt to dismiss the possibility that the Mosasaurus could be only thousands of years old.

b.    See Note 1b of Evidence 3.

2.     The 14C dating was probably done at Lund University’s AMS laboratory. This laboratory performs “high-quality analyses” including pretreatment to remove contaminants. They claim it is possible to date with natural 14C back to about 50,000 years. [44]

3.    The radiocarbon date for this Mosasaurus fossil bone is consistent with the radiocarbon results for the 31 dinosaur bones in Evidence 4.

Evidence 6 - Dinosaur Soft Tissues

Prior to near the end of the 20th Century, it was universally believed by the scientific community that soft organic tissue could not survive long after death, even if frozen or embalmed. Therefore the idea that soft dinosaur tissue could be found in large dinosaur fossils supposedly tens of millions of years old was out of the question.  Then the unthinkable to old earth advocates happened. Dinosaur soft tissue was claimed to be discovered in fossil dinosaur bones. The implications of this discovery were that the dinosaurs may be magnitudes younger than they claimed and the GTS just a figment of some people’s imagination.

Four dinosaur bones with soft tissue and their descriptions are as follows:

1.    In 2005, soft tissue was first discovered in dinosaur bone contrary to conventional thinking. The researchers lead by Mary Schweitzer stated that “Soft tissues are preserved within hindlimb elements of Tyrannosaurus rex (Museum of the Rockies specimen 1125). Removal of the mineral phase reveals transparent, flexible, hollow blood vessels containing small round microstructures that can be expressed from the vessels into solution. Some regions of the demineralized bone matrix are highly fibrous, and the matrix possesses elasticity and resilience. Three populations of microstructures have cell-like morphology. Thus, some dinosaurian soft tissues may retain some of their original flexibility, elasticity, and resilience.” [45] “Schweitzer then duplicated her findings with at least three other well-preserved specimens, one 80-million-year-old hadrosaur and two 65 million-year-old tyrannosaurs. All these specimens preserved vessels, cell-like structures, or flexible matrix that resembled bone collagen from modern specimens.” [46]

2.    In 2012 a Triceratops horridus supraorbital horn was found in the Hell Creek Formation (Late Cretaceous). The Late Cretaceous is conventionally dated between 83.5 ± 0.7 Ma and 70.6 ± 3.4 Ma. [47] “Pieces of small fixed material from the inner core of the horn came apart with moderate hand pressure and were found to contain thin, elastic, reddish-brown flaps of soft material which could be peeled away from the bone in sheets and stretched to almost double the original size.” Some sheets “had multiple layers of intact tissues with osteocyte-like structures featuring filipodial-like interconnections and secondary branching. Both oblate and stellate types of osteocyte-like cells were present in sheets of soft tissues and exhibited organelle-like microstructures.” [48]

3.    In 2015, researchers demineralized fossil tibia bone from a Brachylophosaurus canadensis leaving still soft, hollow structures. After extensive testing, the researchers concluded that their “results add further, robust support to the identification of these still soft, hollow structures as remnant blood vessels produced by the once living dinosaur (e.g., Haversian and/or Volkmann's osseous vessels).” These researchers found no evidence of bacterial or fungal contamination or recrystallization as hypothesized to explain these structures. “When all data are taken into consideration, the most parsimonious explanation is that these vessels, derived from demineralized dinosaur bone, are endogenous.” [49]

4.    In the 1980s dozens of disarticulated nestlings assigned to the duck-billed dinosaur Hypacrosaurus stebingeri were discovered in the Late Cretaceous (75 Ma) Two Medicine Formation in Montana. Researchers working about 35 years later studying one of these Hypacrosaurus cranial bones microscopically observed translucent cartilage as distinguished from bone. “Histochemical and immunological evidence supports in situ preservation of extracellular matrix components found in extant cartilage, including glycosaminoglycans and collagen type II.” [50]

The initial response by the old earth advocates was disbelief that the soft tissues were from dinosaurs and it must be modern contamination but tests indicated this highly unlikely.  Then instead old earth advocates hypothesized it must be the result of remarkable preservation by iron in the blood or the surroundings, protection by the minerals in fossilization, or the smallness of the openings in the bone preventing oxidation or bacteria from entering. It is proper to look at all these possibilities. Still parsimony as used in science favors these dinosaur soft tissues as being young.


1.    Contamination:

The soft tissue found in dinosaur bones has been hypothesized as resulting from bacterial biofilms. “However, biofilms have not been shown to replicate the cellular detail found in dinosaur tissue. Also, amino-acid sequence, antibody affinity, and microspectroscopic analysis reveals significant difference between bacterial proteins and those proteins extracted from the soft tissue. Thus, there is no substantial evidence that the pliable material extracted from dinosaur fossils is contaminating biofilm.” [51]

2.    The youngness of these tissues is further supported by Evidence 4 and 5.


Evidence 7 – Mosasaur Soft Tissue

In 2011, a team of twelve scientists (nine from Lund University, Lund, Sweden and three scientists from American universities demonstrated “that endogenous proteinaceous molecules are retained in a humerus from a Late Cretaceous mosasaur... In situ immunofluorescence of demineralized bone extracts shows reactivity to antibodies raised against type I collagen...” [52]


1.     Type I collagen is the main component of the organic part of bone. [53]

2.   This humerus (IRSNB 1624; Institut Royal des Sciences Naturelles de Belgique) is the same bone as in Evidence 5 above. 

Evidence 8 – Ichthyosaur Soft Tissue

 A well-preserved ichthyosaur Stenopterygius fossil was uncovered in the conventionally dated Jurassic strata (180 Ma) of the Holamaden Posidona shale quarries of Germany. From this fossil, researchers were able to extract still-flexible remnants of the original scaleless skin including distinct epidermal and dermal layers underlaid by insulating blubber. [54] Also identified were “endogenous proteinaceous and lipid constituents, together with keratinocytes and branched melanophores that contain eumelanin pigment.” [55]


1.    Statements made by Dr. Johan Lindgren, the lead author of this study:

a.   “If you remove the minerals the original soft tissues are still there.”

b.     “They were exceedingly rapidly-entombed in the minerals, so that must've happened... during the decay of the animal. They were entombed in calcium phosphate and that entombment apparently preserved the tissues.” [56]

2.    The biblical Flood would provide such rapid entombment.

3.   The only reason to assume Ma for this soft tissue is the presumed age of the strata in which it was found.

Evidence 9 - Dinosaur DNA

DNA is chemically unstable and requires enzymatic DNA-repair mechanisms while the cell is living to maintain the chemical bonds. After death, the enzymatic DNA-repair mechanisms cease to function and unchecked cleavage occurs. Micro-organisms (e.g. bacteria) also attack the DNA destroying it. How long DNA survives also depends on its exposure to heat, water, sunlight, and oxygen, all of which are detrimental to its survival. The initial post-mortem phase of DNA decay is rapid. Burial under a few feet of ground and freezing will extend its life.

How long can DNA last? One peer reviewed study published in 2012 claims to make the best approximation to that question. The researchers measured the mtDNA and nuDNA in 158 14C dated Moa bones. Results supported first order decay kinetics (a half-life) after initial post-mortem. Their model predicted that under the best preservation conditions at below freezing (-5oC), an average length of one DNA base pair (bp) will remain after 6.83 Ma. [57]  

Then astonishingly, in 2020 researchers reported in another peer reviewed publication, National Science Review, finding indications of DNA in dinosaur bone assumed to be from a Hypacrosaurus stebingeri (Evidence 6.4) and dated 75 Ma by conventional uniformitarian assumptions:

“[I]solated Hypacrosaurus chondrocytes react positively with two DNA intercalating stains.   Specific DNA staining is only observed inside the isolated cells, suggesting endogenous nuclear material survived...” [58] Chondrocytes are the only cells found in healthy cartilage.” [59]


1.   The decay rate used to calculate the 6.83 Ma does not “account for the potential initial post-mortem phase of rapid DNA decay governed by nucleases.” [60] 

2.    This decay rate study utilized uniformitarian dating assumptions.

3.   The 6.83 Ma at -5o C versus 75 Ma DNA provides strong evidence for a younger age for the extinction of the large dinosaurs. One factor affecting DNA decay rates is temperature; the higher the temperature the faster it decays. Dinosaurs supposedly lived and died in warm tropical climates.  If dinosaurs were ectotherms like modern lizards requiring body temperatures somewhere from 11.0 to 46.4o C [61], the time to an average length of one DNA bp is in the thousands of years not Ma. [62]

Evidence 10 - Accelerated Radioactive Decay

In 1997, a group of young earth scientists began discussions with the “goal to clarify the chronology of earth history and search for a fundamental correction to the usual assumptions of deep time.” These discussions lead to the RATE project which “was sponsored and promoted by three leading creation science groups, including the Institute for Creation Research and the Creation Research Society. Answers in Genesis gave startup support for the project.” This project lasted eight years and cost around two million dollars. [63] [64]

In their investigations into the rate of radioactive decay, the RATE researchers found multiple strong evidence supporting the hypothesis of one or more recent periods of greatly accelerated radioactive decay including:

1.    Zircon crystals recovered from Precambrian granitic rock in New Mexico with an alleged 1.5-billion year age based on radioisotope dating. Yet, tests indicate they contain huge concentrations of helium from uranium decay that should have diffused thousands of years ago. This provides strong evidence for one or more periods of accelerated nuclear decay in the past and a young age for the earth. [65] [66] [67]

2.   The large number of parentless polonium halos that should not be there due to a very short half-live (3.1 minutes) found in rocks attributed by creationists to the Genesis Flood “appear to require an extreme amount of accelerated nuclear decay during this period.”[68]

3.    Analysis of the possible sources of 14C present in natural diamonds indicates the likely source as “a recent episode of accelerated nuclear decay corresponding to, say, 500 million years worth of U decay” [69]

Accelerated nuclear decay would make all long half-life radiometric dating invalid for dating geological material.



1.    “Helium diffusion casts doubt on uniformitarian long-age interpretations of nuclear data and strongly supports the young world of Scripture.” [70]

2.   Other natural processes support a young earth.  For example, the current rate of influx of dissolved elements in the oceans that do not settle out compared to the dissolved amounts present support a young ocean not the billions assumed by old earth advocates.[71] [72]

3.    There has been a controversy whether radioactive decay rates can vary with geomagnetic activity (GMA) and cosmic-ray activity (CRA). An analysis by one team of researchers “revealed that the decay and capacitance time-series are statistically significantly correlated with GMA and CRA when specific conditions are met.” [73]


Evidence 11 - Coal and Carbon-14


The RATE group investigations also support the hypothesis that the absolute and relative time assumptions for major portions of the GTS are incorrect.  They obtained from the U.S. government ten coal samples from the Eocene (3), Cretaceous (3), and Pennsylvanian (4 ) of the GTS. [74] These periods are dated by the Geological Society of America in GTS v. 5.0 at 56.0 to 33.9, 145.0 to 66.0, and 323.2 to 298.9 Ma, respectively. [75] The U.S. government had collected and stored the coal samples in such a way as to prevent contamination.[76] The RATE group sent these ten samples to one of the foremost AMS laboratories in the world to be prepared and 14C tested. Besides pretreating these samples to remove any contamination, procedural blanks were utilized to subtract any storage, handling, and processing contamination.

The results indicated that the ten samples were very nearly the same age and thousands of years old not the tens and hundreds of millions in the conventional GTS. [77] As the large dinosaurs supposedly died off near the end of the Cretaceous period, the 14C results on coal place this event at thousands of years ago.


1.    Contamination:

The typical range of uranium concentration in coal is 0.8 to 1.15 ppm (0.00008 to 0.000115%) [51] To explain the observed 14C in the coal samples, “then the coal would have to contain 99% uranium, so colloquial parlance would term the sample ‘uranium’ rather than ‘coal.”’ [78]

2.   Results are consistent with these coal strata all being buried at nearly the same time during the worldwide Genesis flood. [79]



Multiple lines of evidence indicate that large terrestrial dinosaurs roamed the earth a few thousand years ago. Intrinsic carbon-14 present in fossils of dinosaur, and mosasaur bones, ammonites, ancient wood, diamonds, and coal testify to their young age. Further support for this hypothesis is the presence of dinosaur soft tissue and DNA for which parsimony as used in science points to a young extinction age because of their rapid rates of decay. This is true although these rates may be slowed under certain conditions such as freezing but will still proceed too fast for the tens of Ma conventionally claimed for the large terrestrial dinosaur extinction event. Other natural processes such as the rate of continental erosion also support a young age.   

Critics of the young ages obtained from 14C dating normally claim that they result from contamination in situ, during excavation, handling, storage, pretreatment, or during testing at lab, although they are unable to provide evidence to support these claims. Evidence to the contrary to these claims are well documented.  The tens and hundreds of million years discrepancy between short half-life 14C and long half-life radioactive isotope dating methods is probably mainly due to greatly accelerated decay in the latter during one or more periods. Evidence for greatly accelerated decay in the latter has been presented by the RATE group. Whether the rate of 14C decay has also been accelerated in the past making some radiocarbon dating results appear much older than actual is uncertain.  




[1] James Hutton: The Founder of Modern Geology, American Museum of Natural History online, viewed July 15, 2021

[2] DeYoung, Don, Thousands... Not Billions, (Master Books: Green Forest, AR, 2005), 126-127.

[3] Morris, John D., The Young Earth, (Master Books: Green Forest, AR, 1994,2007), 57.

[4] DeYoung, Thousands... Not Billions, 126.                                                                                                                 

[5] Morris, The Young Earth.

[6] Austin, Steven, Excess Argon within Mineral Concentrates from the New Dacite Lava Dome at Mount St. Helens Volcano, Creation Ex Nihilo Technical Journal Vol 10 (Part 3), (Creation Science Foundation 1996), 335-343.

[7] Baumgardner, John, Carbon Dating Undercuts Evolution's Long Ages, Acts & Facts. 32 (10), 2003.

[8] Giem, Paul, Carbon-14 Content of Fossil Carbon, Geoscience Research Institute online, January 1, 2001.  

[9] Smit, Karen V. and Shirey, Steven B., Diamonds from the Deep: How Old Are Diamonds? Are They Forever? Gems & Gemology, Spring 2019, Vol. 55, No. 1.

[10] Ibid.

[11] Shirey, Steven and Shigley, James, Recent Advances in Understanding the Geology of Diamonds, Gems & Gemology, Winter 2013, Vol. 49, No. 4.

[12] De Young, Thousands... Not Billions, 57.

[13] Morris, The Young Earth, 67.

[14] DeYoung, Thousands... Not Billions, 58.

[15] Baumgardner, John R.,14C Evidence for a Recent Global Flood and a Young Earth, Chapter 8 (pp. 587-630) of Radioisotopes and the Age of the Earth, Volume II: Results of a Young-Earth Creationist Research Initiative, Vardiman, L; Snelling, A.A.; and Chaffin, E.F. editors, (Institute for Creation Research, El Cajon, California, 2005), 616.

[16] DeYoung, Thousands... Not Billions, 58.

[17] DeYoung, Thousands... Not Billions, 56.

[18] Zheng, Yuting:, Li, Chengming, et al., Diamond with nitrogen: states, control, and applications, Taylor & Francis Online, January 18, 2021.

[19] Baumgardner, 14C Evidence for a Recent Global Flood, 615.

[20] Ham, Ken, Do Diamonds Take Millions of Years to Form? answersingenesis.org, January 3, 2019.

[21] Frequently Asked Questions about Lab Grown Diamonds, adadiamonds.com viewed June 3, 2020.

[22] Mapping Dinosaur Tracks, Dinosaur Valley State Park,https://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/dinosaur-valley/dino-tracks.

[23] Morris, John D, Paluxy River: The Tale of the Trails, Acts & Facts, Apr. 30, 2013.

[24] Snelling, Andrew, Radiocarbon Ages for Fossil Ammonites and Wood in Cretaceous Strata near Redding, California, Answers in Genesis, December 10, 2008.

[25] Snelling, Andrew, Geological conflict, Young radiocarbon date for ancient fossil wood challenges fossil dating, Creation 22(2):44-47, March 2000.

[26] Understanding the Old Wood Effect, BETA Analytic Testing Laboratory, viewed April 17, 2021.

[27] Snelling, Andrew, Radiocarbon Ages.

[28] Ibid.

[29] Snelling, Andrew,Radiocarbon in ‘Ancient’ Fossil Wood, Institute of Creation Research, Acts & Facts 37 (1): 10, January 1, 2008.

[30] Snelling, Andrew, Stumping Old-Age Dogma, Creation 20, no 4, September 1998, 48-51.  

[31] Snelling, Andrew, Radiocarbon in "Ancient Wood, Acts & Facts 37 (1): 10, 2008.

[32] Thomas, Brian; Nelson, Vance, Radiocarbon in Dinosaurs and Other Fossils, Creation Research Society Quarterly 51: 299-311, 2015.

[33] Ibid.

[34] Ibid.

[35] Snelling, Andrew, Dating dilemma: fossil wood in ‘ancient’ sandstone, Creation 21(3):39-41, June 1999.

[36] Ibid.

[37] Carbon-14-dated dinosaur bones are less than 40,000 years old, New Geology US, viewed May 5, 2021.

[38] Thomas, Radiocarbon in Dinosaurs and Other Fossils.

[39] Cherkinsky, Alexander, Dantas, Mario and Cozzuol, Mario,Bioapatite 14C Age of Giant Mammals from Brazil, Cambridge University Press, February 9, 2016.

[40] Thomas, Radiocarbon in Dinosaurs and Other Fossils, 303.

[41] MacDonald, G., et al., Pattern of extinction of the woolly mammoth in Beringia, Nature Communications (2012).

[42] Mosasaur, Wikipedia.

[43] Lingren, J; Uvdial, P, etal., Microspectroscopic Evidence of Cretaceous Bone Proteins, PLoS One, 6(4): e19445, 2011.

[44] Radiocarbon Dating Laboratory, Lund University, Department of Geology, online publication viewed June 17, 2021.

[45] Schweitzer, Mary; Wittmeyer, Jennifer; Horner, John; Toporski, Jan, Soft-Tissue Vessels and Cellular Preservation in Tyrannosaurus rex, Science, March 25, 2005, Vol. 307, Issue 5717, 1952-1955.

[46] North Carolina University, NC State Paleontologist Discovers Soft Tissue in Dinosaur Bones, Science Daily, March 25, 2005.

[47] Two Medicine Formation, Wikipedia, viewed May 14, 2021.

[48] Armitage, Mark; Anderson, Kevin, Soft sheets of fibrillar bone from a fossil of the supraorbital horn of the dinosaur Triceratops horridus, Acta Histochema, 2013.

[49] Cleland, T; Schroeter, E.; Zamdborg, L, etal, Mass Spectrometry and Antibody-Based Characterization of Blood Vessels from Brachylophosaurus canadensis, published online November 23, 2015.

[50] Bailleul, Alida; Zheng, Wenxia, etal., Evidence of proteins, chromosomes and chemical markers of DNA in exceptionally preserved dinosaur cartilage, National Science Review, 7:815-822, 2020.

[51] Anderson, Kevin, Dinosaur Tissue or Bacterial Biofilms? CRS Abstracts, 2015, Volume 51, Number 4 (Spring) published online.

[52] Lingren, J; Uvdial, P, et al., Microspectroscopic Evidence of Cretaceous Bone Proteins, PLoS One, 6(4): e19445, 2011.

[53] Collagen, Wikipedia, viewed May 13, 2021.

[54] Robinson, Philip, Soft tissue preservation in a ‘Jurassic’ ichthyosaur, Creation 42(1), January 2020, 36-37.

[55] Lindgren, Johan; Sjovall, Peter et al., Soft-tissue evidence for homeothermy and crypsis in a Jurassic ichthyosaur,Nature, Dec. 2018,564 (7736), 359-365.

[56] Phorn, Bopha, Remarkable fossil of 180-million-year-old 'sea monster' preserved its Jurassic-era blubber and skin,

ABC News, December 6, 2018.

[57] Allentoft, Morten; Collins, Matthew; et al., The half-life of DNA in bone: measuring decay kinetics in 158 dated Fossils, Proceedings of the Royal Society B (2012) 279, 4724-4733.

[58] Bailleul, Alida; Zheng, Wenxia, et al., Evidence of proteins, chromosomes and chemical markers of DNA in exceptionally preserved dinosaur cartilage, National Science Review, 7:815-822, 2020.

[59] Chonrocyte, Wikipedia.

[60] Allentoft, The half-life of DNA in bone.

[61] Brattstrom, Bayard, Body Temperatures of Reptiles, The American Naturalist, Vol. 73, No.2, (The University of Notre Dame, April 1965), 376.

[62] Allentoft, The half-life of DNA in bone.

[63] The Rate Project, Institute of Creation Research, https://www.icr.org/research/rate/. 

[64] DeYoung, Thousands… Not Billions, 17-19.

[65] Humphreys, Russell; Austin, Steven, et al., Helium Diffusion Rates Support Accelerated Nuclear Decay, Answers in Genesis, Feb. 2, 2011, http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/aid/v6/n1/accelerated-nuclear-decay.

[66] Ashton, John F., editor,in six days, (Green Forest, AR: Master Books, 2000), article by Baumgardner, 235.

[67] DeYoung, Thousands... Not Billions, 78.

[68] Ibid., 95.

[69] Baumgardner, 14C Evidence for a Recent Global Flood, 616.

[70] Humphreys, Helium Diffusion Rates Support Accelerated Nuclear Decay.

[71] Brown, Walt, In the Beginning: Compelling Evidence for Creation and the Flood, (Phoenix, AZ: Center for Scientific Creation,1996), 25.

[72] Morris, Henry, Scientific Creationism, (Green Forest, AZ: Master Books, 1996),153-155.

[73] Milián-Sánchez, V., Scholkmann, F., et al., Fluctuations in measured radioactive decay rates inside a modified Faraday cage: Correlations with space weather, Scientific Reports, natureresearch viewed August 16, 2021.

[74] Morris, The Young Earth, 66.

[75] GSA Geologic Time Scale v 5.0, The Geological Society of America online viewed August 18, 2021, https://www.geosociety.org/documents/gsa/timescale/timescl.pdf.

[76] Morris, The Young Earth, 66

[77] Baumgardner, John, Carbon Dating Undercuts Evolution's Long Ages, Acts & Facts. 32 (10), 2003.

[78] Sarfati, Jonathan, Diamonds: a creationist’s best friend, Radiocarbon in diamonds: enemy of billions of years, Creation 28(4):26-27, September 2006.

[79] Baumgardner, Carbon Dating Undercuts Evolution's Long Ages.










Copyright 2021 All rights reserved.
Home   Site Index   Disclaimer