CALGARY – An outspoken believer in biblical creation recently unearthed five fossils that scientists say are “nearly perfect fish fossil specimens” that will provide “important” insights in the world of science.
Edgar Nernberg, a native of Calgary, Alberta, is a board member of the Big Valley Creation Science Museum. The museum operates “for the glory of the Creator, to display the evidence of his handiwork and refute the lie of evolution,” according to its website, with exhibits spotlighting geology, fossils, dinosaurs, and the age of the earth.
Nernberg says he has been fascinated with fossils ever since seeing seashell fossils as a young boy.
“The first seashell fossils I saw were shown to me by my father in the rocks we had to pick off of our farmland in Manitoba,” he said, “and I’ve been watching for and collecting fossils ever since.”
In addition to his affiliation with the creation museum, Nernberg works as a backhoe operator. During a recent dig job in a residential neighborhood, Nernberg unearthed the discovery of a lifetime: five ancient fish fossils—all in nearly perfect condition. He knew right away that the fossils were special.
“I’ve occasionally come across clams, snails, leaf impressions and wood remains embedded in the sandstone,” Nernberg explained. “When the five fish fossils presented themselves to me in the excavator bucket, the first thing I said was you’re coming home with me, the second thing was I better call a paleontologist.”
“I knew right away that this was different from the other fossils I have uncovered in my many years of excavating and collecting fossils,” he added.
In a statement last week, the University of Calgary describes Nernberg’s “important fossil discovery,” saying the condition of the fish fossil specimens was “nearly perfect.”
“The unearthing was astounding, as five nearly perfect fish fossil specimens were concealed in a block of sandstone in the Paskapoo Formation,” a university spokesperson said in the statement.
Darla Zelenitsky, a paleontologist and assistant professor at the University of Calgary, affirmed that the creationist’s discovery was a “significant find.”
“My first thought was, ‘Oh my goodness, this is really significant,’” she said. “Because we just don’t find that many complete fossils in this rock.”
“Because complete fossils are relatively rare from this time period in Alberta, any such discoveries are significant,” Zelenitsky added.
Nernberg believes the fish fossils were not laid down millions of years ago, but were instead formed by the Great Flood.
“I love earth history, and—of course—there’s two views that point as far as where the fossils come from,” he told reporters. “One is the evolutionary one and the other one is the creationist one, and I believe the fossils demonstrate the creation catastrophe model much better than the evolutionary model.”
The specimens will be sent to the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Drumheller, Alberta, where they will be cleaned up and possibly put on display. Nernberg says he hopes the museum will “put both stories of the origins of the fossils, the creation and the evolution model, on their plaques.”
“We all have the same evidence, and it’s just a matter of how you interpret it,” he said.
Photo: University of Calgary