An Orchid Outwits a Wasp
“And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good.”
Some orchids are remarkable. In a previous Creation Moment, we referred to the bucket orchid and its relationship to the orchid bee. There is a very strange orchid in Australia, called the hammer orchid, which seems to fool wasps.
The thynnid wasp is, itself, quite strange. The females have no wings, but emerge from tiny burrows and climb up a plant to await the male wasp, which flies in, attracted by the female’s scent.
The hammer orchid produces a flower which closely resembles the appearance of the female thynnid and even releases a scent similar to that of the female wasp. So, the male wasp flies in, but instead of a female wasp, he finds the flower awkwardly pivoted, and a little hammer knocks him into the anthers to collect pollen. If he is already coated in pollen, then some of this is rubbed off on to the flower’s stamen.
This process cannot be described as co-evolution because the thynnid wasp gets no advantage. One article on the hammer orchid points out that the male wasp would never confuse the orchid for a female if both were side by side. Therefore, the article stated that natural selection has favored plants which flower just before the females emerge. But an incorrectly timed, pre-evolutionary orchid would not have survived to pass on the supposed evolved genes. Therefore, once again, we see that evolution is impossible as a means of explaining this remarkable design.
Comments are closed.