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Index to Creationist Claims,  edited by Mark Isaak,    Copyright © 2004
Previous Claim: CB601.2.4   |   List of Claims   |   Next Claim: CB601.3

Claim CB601.2.5:

The increase in the proportions of light moths in many locations preceded significant changes in the colour of tree trunks. This raises questions about the accuracy of the classical theory that changes to the population of the peppered moth were brought about by natural selection resulting from bird predation.


Discovery Institute, 2003. A preliminary analysis of the treatment of evolution in biology textbooks currently being considered for adoption by the Texas State Board of Education., p. 11


  1. I have been unable to find a shred of evidence in the primary scientific literature to support this claim. It is a stronger version of claim that light peppered moths increased before lichens (CB601.2.4), for which the balance of evidence already seems unpersuasive (see the response to that claim).

    While the source lists 12 references, it gives no indication which, if any, of them has provided evidence for the claim. Certainly none is given in any of the first three of these references (Coyne 1998; Sargent et al. 1998; Wells 1999), which merely assert the weaker claim CB601.2.4.


  1. Coyne, Jerry A., 1998. Not black and white (A review of Melanism: Evolution in Action by Michael E.N. Majeris). Nature 396: 35-36.
  2. Sargent, Theodore D., Craig D. Millar and David M. Lambert, 1998. The "classical" explanation of industrial melanism--Assessing the evidence. Evol. Biol. 30: 299-322.
  3. Wells, Jonathan, 1999. Second thoughts about peppered moths. The Scientist, 13(11): 13.

Further Reading:

Grant, Bruce S., 1999. Fine tuning the peppered moth paradigm. Evolution 53(3): 980-984.
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created 2003-11-30