The original question was: Hawaiian birds must have evolved as they are so far from anywhere else and not found anywhere else and the honey creepers are unique, so how do you explain that?
Answer by Philip Snow
Like the Galapagos Islands, Hawaii is a volcanic chain in the middle of a big ocean. It’s very young by standard geological terms, so how could tiny birds such as honey creepers which are members of the finch family, even get there and produce the species unique to Hawaii?
Let’s start with a basal ancestral finch type (sunbird /honeyeater) that would give us the modern honeycreepers. Due to the island nature of Hawaii, then as per the Galapagos finches the Hawaiian birds would also had to arrive from elsewhere. Could they have flown? Yes, even tiny birds can fly huge distances across oceans (although also assisted by storms, as many small birds still do world-wide today), or they simply could have arrived by hitching on rafts of vegetation. And like many another members of the bird ‘Family’, it has been discovered they can also change their beak shapes to suit food sources, and thus diversify into “apparently different species” when resident on differing islands. This phenomena is best seen in the Galapagos Finches.
Experiments to test this diversifying talent done with finches being deliberately introduced onto isolated islands during the last century, have proved how rapidly they can change, size, plumage colours, and especially beak shapes and sizes. Very rapidly indeed – even from one generation to the next, in the case of some Galapagos Finches currently being studied!
On the Galapagos, the Finches have simply adjusted to develop thick or thin, long or short beaks to suit a dry or wet year’s seed availability/size. And this is all by built-in, environment-triggered, genetic control, which not only ensures they can survive environmental change, but that they don’t evolve into a different kind. Such an inbuilt method of size/shape/control means nothing will breed beyond its ‘Kind’ or Genus /Family boundaries, as Genesis always stated. One Hawaiian honeycreeper, the oddly named Iiwi, seems to be lengthening its beak as rapidly as its food source flower, deepens its ‘trumpet’!
None of this is Darwinian ‘evolution’ for two very important reasons: It involves no new genetic information, just the usual rejigging which provides the variety seen in birds and even drives us to call them ‘sub-species,’ yet since they can still breed together – they still corresponds only reproducing ‘After their Kinds’ (Genus/ Family). Secondly, since this beak growing/shape changing ability can occur very rapidly, it is clearly a pre-designed response to an environmental need, and not at all slow, blind or random, evolution by genetic ‘mistakes’. In other words it is part of a predesigned intelligently created system God made in the beginning!
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