Insectman Home
Contact Us
My Testimony
Our Links
Get Saved
Exodus Mandate
The Lie: Evolution


The Case of the Yucca and the Pronuba Moth

by Anonymous

In all nature there are few cases of such obvious interdependence as exists between the Yucca plant and the Pronuba moth. It is most amazing.

"The yucca is a bright and popular desert flower which seems tough and independent, sending up flowers of white lilies from a cluster of sharp leaves like wicked swords pointing out in all directions. But this beautiful, boastful lily's life hangs on one little white moth that hides underground in the daytime and comes out and flaps around, without ever eating, in the desert night. Yucca buds open at nightfall and pour out their white flowers which, on certain nights, give forth a strong fragrance.

"AT THIS EXACT MOMENT the pronuba moths break out of their cocoons beneath the sand. They struggle up into the air and are led by the odor straight to the flowers. The moth goes to the top of the stamens of the first flower it reaches and scrapes together a wad of pollen three times as big as her head. Carrying this big load in her jaws and tentacles, which are specially enlarged for this purpose, she flies to another yucca plant, Still holding the pollen, she backs down into the bottom of a flower, pierces a hole with her egg-laying needle and lays eggs among the seed cells in the green pod at the base of the pistil.

"Then she climbs to the top of the same pistil where there is a cavity just the right size to receive the wad of pollen. She stuffs this full, pushing down the pollen and padding it to make sure that plenty of pollen tubes will grow quickly and spark the seeds where she has laid her eggs.

"The mother moth plans far ahead. . . .She has deliberately bred the plants so that her babies will have a supply of food when they are born. While the pronuba eggs are getting ready to hatch, the yucca's seeds are ripening. when the moth's larvae (caterpillars) finally emerge from their eggs, they find themselves surrounded by delicious food. They eat their fill of seeds, grow and finally cut a hole through the pod and lower themselves to the ground by spinning a silk thread.

"The mother moth never eats. She just lays eggs, pollinates the yucca to make the seeds ripen, and dies. As the moth, babies eat only about a fifth of the seeds in the pod, the rest of the seeds mature successfully and go on raising more yuccas which in turn will raise more pronubas.

"No one can say how and why this vital partnership of the lily and the moth was planned. WHY DOES THE MOTH COME OUT ON THE NIGHT WHEN THE FLOWERS BLOOM? Why does she do things in the right order? WHAT TELLS HER TO CARRY POLLEN FROM ONE FLOWER TO ANOTHER INSTEAD OF POLLINATING THE SAME FLOWER? What prompts her to work so hard to drive home the pollen in just the right spot? Why don't the caterpillars eat all the seeds? These are just a few of the questions that must go unanswered when we look for reasons in nature's order of things." (Rutherford Platt, in an article on "POLLINATION.") (Caps in quotations are ours). *

* There are other amazing facts not mentioned by Mr. Platt. One is, there are several species of the Yucca plant and each species has its own species of moth. The flower is so constructed that it can only be pollinated by this particular moth — and that moth is as dependent on the yucca plant as the yucca plant is on the moth!

The Pronuba moth "is provided with special tentacles covered with stiff bristles and obviously designed for the purpose of collecting pollen from the anthers of the yucca flowers. . . .There are years in which the yucca plants in a given locality do not flower. . . . It has been observed that in those years when the yucca does not bloom the moths remain dormant in the pupa stage; but when the flowers appear again on the yucca plants THE MOTHS EMERGE AT THE RIGHT TIME TO CARRY ON THEIR PART"  in this amazing scheme! This is altogether wonderful, and utterly inexplicable, except on the grounds of DIVINE CREATION, God alone can devise and put into effective operation such miracles!

Mr. Platt may not know the answers to his questions — but the believer in God does. The only possible explanation for such an intricate series of action, in perfect co-ordination between a plant incapable of thinking and a moth incapable of reasoning power or foresight, is that GOD MADE IT SO. And so the little Pronuba moth, and the lovely Yucca plant of the desert are mighty witnesses to the fact that GOD MADE THEM SO. Throughout all creation there are a million voices — voices that rise from the throats of songbirds, insects, animals, flowers and fishes of the sea — that bear testimony to the power and wisdom of God in His magnificent creation.

We would like some evolutionist to answer this question: How could the Yucca plant and the Pronuba moth both evolve, by "chance mutations," "random changes," natural selection, or any other "chance" method, in such a way, and at the same time, so that both organisms were perfected together, to be dependent on each other as completely as are the Yucca plant and the Pronuba moth? Such a relationship of interdependence and helpfulness could not possibly come about except by outside intervention. That intervention was and could only be by One of supreme power and intelligence.