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Index to Creationist Claims,  edited by Mark Isaak,    Copyright © 2004
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Claim CC341:

Pollen has been found in Cambrian and Precambrian rocks, particular the Hakatai Shales of the Grand Canyon. By standard evolutionary models, these rocks pre-date the evolution of pollen-bearing plants.


Burdick, C. L. 1966. Microflora of the Grand Canyon. Creation Research Society Quarterly 3(1): 38-50.
Burdick, C. L. 1972. Progress report on Grand Canyon palynology. Creation Research Society Quarterly 9(1): 25-30.
AIG, 1990. Fossil pollen in Grand Canyon overturns plant evolution. Creation Ex Nihilo 12(1): 38-39.


  1. Most of the palynology work was done by Clifford Burdick, who had very little knowledge of geological techniques. Creationists themselves admit that his results come from contamination of old rocks by recent pollen [Flank 1995; Chadwick 1973; 1981].

  2. Intrusion of pollen in older rocks is very common. Pollen is ubiquitous, and its small size allows it to be carried into even small cracks by water seepage. To verify that pollen is fossil pollen rather than a contamination, one must look at several factors:
    There is no indication that the out-of-place pollen passes any of these tests. In particular, the Hakatai Shales have lava intrusions, so we would expect any fossil pollen in them to have burned up.


Morton, Glenn, 1997. Precambrian pollen.


  1. Chadwick, A. V., 1973. Grand Canyon palynology -- a reply. Creation Research Society Quarterly 9: 238.
  2. Chadwick, A. V., 1981. Precambrian pollen in the Grand Canyon - a re-examination. Origins 8(1): 7-12.
  3. Flank, Lenny, 1995. Does science discriminate against creationists?

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created 2003-6-27