The Giraffe and the Lack of Transitional Forms

I have believed for some time that a lack of transitional forms is a strong argument against Darwinian evolution. I personally believe in micro evolution, but have yet to see compelling evidence for macro evolution and its ability to form new species.

I got up this morning and decided to do a bit more hunting on the net to see if I could more information about transitional species. I found a fascinating article written by German professor Wolf-Ekkehard Lönnig. He is a researcher on mutation genetics at the University of Bonn. Also, before proponents of evolution jump to conclusions, he is not affiliated with the Discovery Institute.

Check out these articles, they are an interesting read.

The Evolution of the Long-Necked Giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis L.): What do we really know? (part 1)

The Evolution of the Long-Necked Giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis L.): What do we really know? (part 2)


Here is a summary from the Appendix to give you an idea about the content of the article:

Introduction: the story which is commonly taught in high schools about the evolution of the longnecked
giraffe by natural selection (feeding-competition-hypothesis) fails to explain, among other things,
the size differences between males and females. Giraffe cows are up to 1.5 meters shorter than the giraffe
bulls, not to mention the offspring. The wide migration range of the giraffe and the low heights of the most
common plants in their diet likewise argue against the dominant selection hypothesis. Now to the main
points: 1) The fossil „links“, which according to the theory should appear successively and replace each
other, usually exist simultaneously for long periods of time. 2) Evolutionary derivations based on similarities
rely on circular reasoning (to refer once more to Kuhn’s statement) 3) The giraffe has eight cervical
vertebrae. Although the 8th vertebra displays almost all the characteristics of a neck vertebra, as an exception to the rule the first rib pair is attached there. 4) The origin of the long-necked giraffe by a macromutation is, due to the many synorganized structures, extremely improbable. 5) Sexual selection also lacks a mutational basis and, what is more, is frequently in conflict with natural selection („head clubbing“ is probably „a consequence of a long neck and not a cause“). 6) In contrast to the thus-far proposed naturalistic hypotheses, the intelligent design theory is basically testable. 7) The long-necked giraffes possibly all belong to the same basic type inasmuch as 8] a gradual evolution from the short-necked to the long-necked giraffe is ruled out by the duplication of a neck vertebra and the loss of a thoracic vertebra. 9) Chance mutations are principally not sufficient to explain the origin of the long-necked giraffe. 10) The intelligent design theory offers an adequate and satisfying solution to the problems and points to numerous „old“ and new research projects. 11) Mitchell and Skinner present a good analysis of the selectionist problem; however, their phylogenetic hypotheses presuppose the correctness of the synthetic evolutionary theory, and their claims of “intermediate forms“ are unproven. –
Wolf-Ekkehard Lönnig


3 thoughts on “The Giraffe and the Lack of Transitional Forms

  1. Lack of transitional fossils? Are you kidding? Like, seriously?

    There are countless thousands of transitional fossils that have been found. Have you never heard of archaeopteryx? What about tiktaalik?

    Archaeopteryx transitions dinosaurs to birds (sort of) and tiktaalik transitions fish to amphibians. That’s just two examples. There are also transitions like Lucy (which isn’t fake, actually), and so on.

    Ignorance abounds…

  2. Copache, did you read the articles referenced in the post? The point of the article is there should be tens of thousands of transitional forms just for the giraffe. Where are they? They aren’t in the fossil record and they aren’t walking around.

    Many of the “transitional forms” you have referenced could just as easily be argued as being a species that has gone extinct.

    Only the truly ignorant will disagree with micro evolution, i.e. changes within a species. I have yet to see compelling evidence that evolution (of the macro type) leads to new species. Also, we should not just have transitional forms in the fossil record, but we should be seeing transitional forms all around us. Did everything just evolve at the same pace so that each species reached maturity at the same time so that no more transitional forms existed outside of fossils? Have things stopped evolving? That doesn’t make sense and we see that things do still evolve because of things like viruses. However, they do not stop being viruses and become something else, nor will they ever become something else. Micro evolution.

    I will repeat what I have said in previous posts, I agree with micro evolution. Evolution’s most dramatic failure is that neither it, nor any other theory, can adequately explain the origins of life or the origins of our universe without the presence of a designer to have at least started the process.

  3. Caleb,

    I think that it is important to clarify your verbiage. I believe what you are talking about (micro evolution), could be better explained by using the word adaptation. Adaptations occur throughout all species, but adaptations do not lead to a different species. Adaptations are adjustments to things like environmental conditions, or the modification of any organism that makes it more fit for existence under the conditions of its environment. (Definition from


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