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Index to Creationist Claims,  edited by Mark Isaak,    Copyright © 2004
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Claim CH514.1:

Although a few animals have specialized food needs, such animals are rare, the needs are often exaggerated, and the specialized diets are not labor or space intensive. In short, the specialized dietary needs of animals do not prevent the voyage of Noah's ark from being feasible.


Woodmorappe, John, 1996. Noah's Ark: A Feasibility Study, Santee, CA: ICR, pp. 111-117.


  1. Woodmorappe did not consider all animals with special needs. Just because some snakes can be coaxed to eat nonliving food, for example, does not mean all can.

    Most problematical, Woodmorappe did not consider terrestrial invertebrates, especially insects, which must have been on the ark. Many insects only eat a single species of plant. Keeping all the plants alive for a year would have taken considerable resources.

  2. Some animals' needs may be exaggerated, but Woodmorappe grossly exaggerated how easy it would be to deal with them. Many animals, such as the platypus, are difficult to keep alive during transport even in the best of conditions (Fleay 1958). Noah could give hardly any attention to individual animals and would have had to keep them in nigh intolerable conditions. Modern livestock shipping often results in high casualty rates, even though only domestic animals are shipped, and they are at sea only a few weeks.

  3. Woodmorappe noted that some animals can be fed artificial diets. He failed to note that the artificial diets were developed by the work of hundreds of researchers working over tens to hundreds of years. Noah would not have had that knowledge to draw upon.

  4. Some of Woodmorappe's solutions to feeding problems have problems of their own. He proposed feeding insectivores by breeding insects on grain in special compartments, and letting the insects escape into the cages of the insectivores through perforated pipes. Some of the escaping insects, however, would escape into the general grain stores, reducing a great deal of the food to waste before the voyage was over.


  1. Fleay, David, 1958. Flight of the platypus. National Geographic 114 (Oct.): 512-525.

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created 2003-8-9