Flock of Dodos: The Evolution-Intelligent Design Circus

Flock of Dodos examines the disagreements that proponents of intelligent design have with the scientific consensus position of evolution. The evolutionarily famous dodo (Raphus cucullatus) is a now-extinct bird that lived on the Island of Mauritius, which is approximately 500 miles east of Madagascar. When Portuguese sailors arrived on the island, the possible combination of over-hunting and introduction of new predators (i.e. pigs, macaques) seems to have led to its extinction by approximately 1700. Due to its lack of fear of humans and inability to fly, the dodo was easy prey, and thus became known for its apparent stupidity. It failed to change with an evolving environment, which ultimately led to the birds’ demise.

The film attempts to determine who the real “dodos” are in a constantly evolving world: the scientists who are failing to effectively promote evolution as a scientifically accepted fact, the intelligent design advocates, or the American public who get fooled by the “salesmanship” of evolution critics. While Randy Olson ultimately sides with the scientists who accept evolution, he gives equal air time to both sides of the argument, including intelligent design proponent Michael Behe and several of his colleagues.

The film begins by going over the history of intelligent design thought from Plato and Paley to the present-day incarnation promoted by the Discovery Institute. Olson mixes in humorous cartoons of squawking dodos with commentary from his mother and interviews with proponents on both sides of the intelligent design/evolution debate.

On the intelligent design side, Olson interviews Behe, John Calvart (founder of the Access Research Network) and a member of the Kansas school board. Olson also unsuccessfully tries to interview school board member Connie Morris and members of the Discovery Institute.

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  • Intriguing, I hope that we save all the animals that are becoming extinct, its sad we need to start saving whats left.

    • Theta

      The problem with trying to “save what’s left” is that those species that have dropped to low population numbers also have very low genetic diversity, and most of them are related to one another. This often means that birth defects are high, and it’s difficult for these species to adapt.

  • Considering the understanding level of genetics today, it provides a scientific platform that defines a logical theory of evolution that is self explanatory. The cross breeding of genes between two people in and of itself a level of evolution… a small level but evolution none the less.
    But your really don’t need a scientific explanation you just need to look around you. There is a reason why people in different countries have different traits such as Asian or Latinos as examples. Populations from different areas with the lack of cross breading from other areas develop traits that become ubiquitous throughout the population.  It is evolution in the gene pool that creates these different traits.

    You have on one side of the issue a religious based platform totally ignoring genetics and the other side with a scientific process that can be proven… sorry you Intelligent Designer’s, you did evolve from a monkey!    

  • Ryan


    We evolved from apes, not monkeys.

  • T12J7M6

    Where is the full documentary? Without it and its proofs this is just another evolutionary propaganda clip…

  • paroikos

    Evolutionism is the myth which has attached itself to the enormously complex range of Earth’s spectacular biodiversity. It eschews any discussion of the origins of life, because that would entail conjecture about a) how lifeless. primordial elements ‘learned’ to self-encode, and b) how this magical auto-encoding transmogrified itself into cognitive processes and consciousness. Evolutionism, then, is founded upon a ‘naturalist’ metaphysic which governs all material reality–that dead ylem from the Big Bang [?], eventually, taught itself to think. It’s a scientistic circus that, supposedly, displays the powers of “Intelligent Fortuity” over the course of 13.799 billion years.