temperatures, but then he argues that high temperatures
actually assist in their preservation! So again, which is it?
The average Montana summer and winter temperatures
are 31oC (88oF) and 13oC (9oF) respectively, plus rainwater,
and melting snow and ice are large environmental factors
that cannot be ignored. Therefore, the Triceratops horn
that yielded soft tissues cycled through hot and below-freezing temperatures year after year and yet shows
8. Neutral pH is desirable according to Rana’s logic, but
then so is highly acidic or highly alkaline! Again, I ask,
which is it? Nevertheless, with all of the biotic activity in
the Hell Creek Formation layers it is assumed that neutral
pH, conducive to the presence of all the living organisms
listed above, was the case for the Triceratops horn. Once
again, a ‘must have’ stabilizing factor is invalidated.
9. Finally, Rana1 argues that collagen survives better when
buried in mineral-rich environments that coat collagen
and sequester it from enzymes, decomposers, and the
like. However, stunningly preserved osteocytes are not
collagen, yet I am finding fully supple and soft cells, in
large numbers with no evidence of permineralization.
Once again, a ‘must have’ stabilizing condition outlined
by Rana is invalidated.
None of these conditions apply to the soft sheets of
fibrillar bone that I peeled away from interior sections of
the fractured Triceratops horn collected less than 61 cm
( 2 ft) from the surface of the Montana badlands, nor to
the thousands of soft cells I have recovered from within
that horn to date.
More could be said about the rest of this book, but I
believe the damage is done. Hastily arranged experiments
that ‘prove’ that iron and Fenton chemistry preserved
these stunning cells are demonstrably flawed. Neither
can Rana expect that any of his conditions ‘must’ have
been present to preserve the Triceratops horn tissues we
I wish to express my appreciation to the reviewers and
to Andrew Snelling who have helped to make this a better
1. Rana, F., Dinosaur Blood and the Age of the Earth, RTB Press, Covina, CA,
2. For example, Mortenson, T. and Ury, T.H. (Eds.), Coming to Grips with
Genesis, Green Forest, Master Books, AR, 2008.
3. Armitage, M.H., Preservation of Triceratops horridus tissue cells from
the Hell Creek Formation, MT, Microscopy Today
24(01): 18–23, 2016 |
4. For example, Vardiman, L., Snelling, A.A. and Chaffin, E.F. (Eds.),
Radioisotopes and the Age of the Earth: A Young-Earth Creationist Research
Initiative, Institute for Creation Research; St. Joseph, MO, and Creation
Research Society, El Cajon, CA, 2000; Vardiman, L., Snelling, A.A. and
Chaffin, E.F. (Eds.), Radioisotopes and the Age of the Earth: Results of a
Young-Earth Creationist Research Initiative, Institute for Creation Research,
El Cajon, CA, and Creation Research Society, Chino Valley, AZ, 2005.
5. Jenkins, J.H., Herminghuysen, K.R. and Blue, T.E. et al., Additional
experimental evidence for a solar influence on nuclear decay rates,
Astroparticle Physics 37: 81–88, 2012.
6. Sibley, A., Variable radioactive decay rates and the changes in solar activity,
27( 2): 3–4, 2013; creation.com/radioactive-decay-rates-and-solar-activity.
7. Armitage, M.H. and Anderson, K.L., Soft sheets of fibrillar bone from a
fossil of the supraorbital horn of the dinosaur Triceratops horridus, Acta
Histochemica 115:603–608, 2013.
8. Thomas, B. and Nelson, V., Radiocarbon in dinosaur and other fossils,
Creation Research Society Quarterly
51( 4):299–311, 2015.
9. Vardiman, L., Snelling, A.A. and Chaffin, 2005, ref. 4.
10. McCord, J., Iron, free radicals and oxidative injury, J. Nutrition 134( 11):
11. Schweitzer, M.H., Zheng, W., Cleland, T.P. et al., A role for iron and oxygen
in preserving soft tissues, cells and molecules from deep time, Proceedings
of the Royal Society B 281:2013.2741, 2014 | doi: 10.1098/rspb.2013.2741; rspb.
12. For more information, see DeMassa, J.M. and Boudreaux, E., Dinosaur
peptide preservation and degradation, Creation Research Society Quarterly
51( 4):268–285, 2015.
13. Armitage and Anderson, ref. 7, p. 603.
14. Prousek, J., Fenton chemistry in biology and medicine, Pure and Applied
79( 12):2325–2338, 2007.
15. Hawkins, C.L. and Davies, M.J., Generation and propagations of radical
reactions on proteins, Biochimica Biophysica Acta 1504:196–219, 2001.
Mark Armitage studied biology and plant pathology at
the University of Florida. He holds an M.S. in biology
with emphasis in electron microscopy from the ICR
Graduate School and an ED.S. in science education
from Liberty University. His photomicrographs have
been featured on the covers of 16 scientific journals.
He has published widely on parasitology and most
recently on the topic of soft tissues and cells in
dinosaur remains. Mark taught biology at the Master's
College, Azusa Pacific University and California State
University, Northridge where he also ran a million-dollar
electron and confocal microscopy laboratory. He was
terminated when his paper on soft dinosaur tissues was
published in Acta Histochemica in 2013. Mark sought
relief in Los Angeles Superior Court and was awarded
a large settlement August of 2016.