“Smoke goes out of his nostrils, as from a boiling pot and burning rushes.”
Warm-blooded creatures need to be able to vent excess heat or they begin to suffer heatstroke. One of the ways in which warm-blooded animals do this is through the nasal cavities. As they breathe, the air passes through sheets of mucous membranes that are designed to increase the surface area over which the air passes. These membranes have a rich blood supply. When too much heat builds up, the membranes vent excess heat into the passing air, thus protecting the brain. The ingenious design of this system is an argument for an all wise Creator.
Far from being “primitive,” even large dinosaurs seem to have had this cooling system. Moreover, there is increasing evidence that many dinosaurs were warm-blooded. Researchers recently examined a Triceratops skull with a CT scanner and found that the nasal passages of the Triceratops occupied half of the skull. Skulls of smaller species of dinosaurs showed that they had disproportionately smaller cooling passages. It is believed that if the dinosaurs were warm blooded, then the very large dinosaurs would indeed have required very large cooling passages.
As we have noted on earlier Creation Moments programs, there is good evidence that the leviathan described in the book of Job was a large dinosaur. Large dinosaurs would need nasal cavities that transferred heat from their blood to the air they exhaled. Perhaps when Job describes smoke coming from leviathan’s nostrils, he is describing heated, moisture laden air hitting the colder air of the atmosphere as leviathan exhaled.
I praise You, Lord, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Amen.
Discover, 2/00. p. 13, “Paleo Pinocchios.” Photo: Triceratops skull at London’s Natural History Museum. Courtesy of Zachi Evenor. (CC-BY 3.0)