The thread on the latest dinosaur discovery has been hopelessly taken off topic, as normal, and now has many separate topics wrapped in one thread. One posted has asked that we divide the separate topics into separate threads. What question that came up was the issue of "kinds." I had posed the question, "Could you define for us what a "kind" is? Tell us how you identify them. Tell us by what process a "kind" is able to produce the variations that result in different species. Tell us what process prevents a "kind" from varying right into what might be called a different kind." An answer was given. "Here's simple for you. Strong's. kind, sometimes a species (usually of animals) ++++ Groups of living organisms belong in the same created "kind" if they have descended from the same ancestral gene pool. This does not preclude new species because this represents a partitioning of the original gene pool. Information is lost or conserved not gained. A new species could arise when a population is isolated and inbreeding occurs. By this definition a new species is not a new "kind" but a further partitioning of an existing "kind"." While beginning, this is not yet a useful definition. We need to be able to identify "kinds" and not just have a general definition. So to start, I want to examine one specific area: dogs. Where is the line with dogs? I will present some possibilities. 1. The first possibility is that dogs are a unigue "kind." It might be possible to even break the brreds of dog into separate "kinds" since the wide gulf between the largest and smallest dogs make reproduction impossible for the entire group. But I do not list that as a possibility here because I think that most on both sides agree that all the breeds of dog are the result of selective breeding. 2. Dogs and the wolves are a single "kind." 3. Dogs and the other canines are a single "kind." This would mean that wolves, dogs, foxes, coyotes and jackels are all part of one "kind." I think this is the view favored by many YEers but it raises that question of where did all of the genetic information needed to make this wide variety of species come from? You have significant differences in genetics and even differening numbers of chromosomes among this broad group. It also raises the question of where to fit creatures such as Cynodictis, Hesperocyon and Ursavus. These are transitionals. The first two are the ancestors of bears and the members of the canines while the third is an ancestor of the bears which is very dog-like. How would these be incorporated into the kinds concept. I suppose one option would be that these are additional, unique kinds. 4. Or there could be another option. Bears and all of the canines are of one "kind." This is likely further back than the average YEer would be comfortable, but it is the only way to really classify the three above (and other,related) animals in an intellectually satisfying way. But this leads to a problem of what to do with all of the intermediates at this level of classification in the fossil record. 5. Which leads to another possibility. Perhaps all of the Caniformia group of carnovores are one "kind." Now you are including, in addition to wolves, coyotes, bears, foxes, jackels and dogs, pandas, weasels, ferrets, otters, badgers, skunks, wolverines, raccoons, walrus, seals, sea lions and related species in one "kind." It has now gotten rediculous, but you must group them this way if you wish to account for all of the know transitionals between these groups. They are not listed here for space, but we can add them if needed. 6. But, if you are going to go that far, you might aswell continue to recognize the role of known transtional species and add the rest of the memebers of the carnivores to the list. So besides the ones in choice 5, you must add lions, tigers, cheetas, saber-toothed cats, civets, hyenas, mongooses, meerkats, linsangs, genets, aardwolfs and other related species. This is nothing that your average young earther is willing to do, but is must be done. If not, then we need to identify ALL of the "kinds" in the group called carnivores in a way that takes care of both the extant species AND which places the fossil species identified as transitions either into one of these other "kinds" or into their own separate "kinds." Until there is a method defining how this should be done and allowing for the categorization of other groups of animals into "kinds" then the concept is not defined nor useful.