God-made Bird Magnetic Perception Leverages QM/Spin Chemistry

This paper describes in lay terms the amazing ability of birds to “see” magnetic fields:



This is the BRAVURA paper that goes into QM/Spin Chemsitry details of the Bird Magnetic Perception:
https://tinyurl.com/yyrd4y3x

A lot of it was over my head, although I supposedly have the physic background to understand it if I devote 2 months full time to learning the details. UGH! To see the formulas which may not render in your browser, you can download the PDF for free. It’s what I consider a REAL scientific paper vs. a story-telling paper pretending to be science.

Here are some wiki articles related to this, lots of it over my head:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spin_chemistry
and
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyperfine_structure

The claim of “God-made” in the title is a statement of faith much like the claim that “nature-evolved” is a statement of faith.
0

39 thoughts on “God-made Bird Magnetic Perception Leverages QM/Spin Chemistry

  1. “Humans have a magnetic sensor in our eyes, but can we detect magnetic fields?”

    Do humans need to detect or “see” the magic field?

    If yes, what would it for?

    0
  2. The claim of “God-made” in the title is a statement of faith much like the claim that “nature-evolved” is a statement of faith.

    So far, every god I’ve heard about is imaginary, while nature is all around us. If that doesn’t help you understand that “God-made” is ridiculous in comparison to “nature-evolved,” then you’re too much of an idiot.

    0
  3. Regarding QM/Spin Chemistry (wiki):

    Spin Chemistry is a sub-field of chemistry and physics, positioned at the intersection of chemical kinetics, photochemistry, magnetic resonance and free radical chemistry, and dealing with magnetic and spin effects in chemical reactions. The examples of phenomena that Spin Chemistry deals with are Chemically Induced Dynamic Nuclear and Electron Polarization (CIDNP and CIDEP), magnetic isotope effects in chemical reactions, as well as the environmental, health effects of static and oscillating electromagnetic fields, and avian magnetoreception, particularly as radical-pair reaction kinetics are dependent on the direction of magnetic fields.[1]

    That’s interesting. I only learned of this yesterday.

    0
  4. I used to be skeptical on the effect of magnetic fields on biological development or even causes of cancer or even healing. Spin chemistry at least give a route by which small magnetic fields can affect organisms that have acute sensitivity to such fields.

    The BRAVURA paper that went into the spin chemistry details points out the possible sensitivity magenetic sensing cells may have to radio waves. That was pretty interesting too!

    0
  5. The claim of “God-made” in the title is a statement of faith much like the claim that “nature-evolved” is a statement of faith.

    This is a very dangerous move that I would caution everyone here from making.

    If the move here is “we’re assessing the same evidence but through different a priori commitments,” then what can be said about the rationality or truth of those a priori commitments themselves?

    If all a priori commitments are mere “faith” (whatever that means!) then it’s really hard to see how one could possibly avoid postmodern relativism: we have our ungrounded dogmatic commitments, they have theirs, those other folks have theirs, etc.

    This move does of course undermine the pretensions of materialistic metaphysics, but at the cost of undermining all pretensions of all metaphysics, including theistic. And that’s what generates the postmodern relativistic situation: everyone just has their “opinion” and no one is wrong and therefore no one is right.

    0
  6. Entropy: So far, every god I’ve heard about is imaginary, while nature is all around us. If that doesn’t help you understand that “God-made” is ridiculous in comparison to “nature-evolved,” then you’re too much of an idiot.

    Anything can evolve as long as the belief in the natural selection’s omnipotence is kept alive by the faithful…😂

    0
  7. stcordova: The present theory is that humans used to have magnetic perception, but have lost practically all of it.

    That explains why the chick magnet in me never seemed to work at all

    0
  8. Kantian Naturalist: This is a very dangerous move that I would caution everyone here from making.

    If the move here is “we’re assessing the same evidence but through different a priori commitments,” then what can be said about the rationality or truth of those a priori commitments themselves?

    If all a priori commitments are mere “faith” (whatever that means!) then it’s really hard to see how one could possibly avoid postmodern relativism: we have our ungrounded dogmatic commitments, they have theirs, those other folks have theirs, etc.

    This move does of course undermine the pretensions of materialistic metaphysics, but at the cost of undermining all pretensions of all metaphysics, including theistic. And that’s what generates the postmodern relativistic situation: everyone just has their “opinion” and no one is wrong and therefore no one is right.

    Thank you very much for weighing in. If I may clarify, the idea of “nature” in my usage is ordinary and typically expected events — such ordinary and typical operation is called “natural.”

    The disagreement is whether magnetic navigation or any other sophisticated machine naturally arises based on the natural expectation of chemistry and physics.

    A physicist by the name of Hoyle figuratively encapsulated the problem by saying it is NOT expected a tornado passing through a junkyard will create a 747. The meaning of the statement is that in like manner it is not the natural expectation that intricate, carefully connected machines will self assemble.

    The claim is that natural selection will make such machines. I’ve argued that claim is false, that what naturally happens is DE-evolution and destruction by natural selection, not construction.

    I’ve said if an atheist wants to reject the God explanation, the next best explanation is a Black Swan-type event that is nothing like anything consistent with our understanding of physics and chemistry. One might insist the Black Swan process isn’t God, it just has a comparable skill set.

    0
  9. stcordova: The disagreement is whether magnetic navigation or any other sophisticated machine naturally arises based on the natural expectation of chemistry and physics.

    However, such an evaluation in turn depends on whether we think our chemistry and physics are sufficiently complete for us to say that anything we didn’t predict on that basis therefore counts as “non-natural.”

    That is, shall we stipulate that by “natural” we mean “physics and chemistry as they currently exist, and everything that can be predicted from them using some math?”

    If one doesn’t think that, then one might think — from magnetic navigation or any other of millions of examples — “huh, I guess physics and chemistry is a lot more complicated and interesting than we thought!”

    I myself am deeply pessimistic about the prospects for reducing any scientific theory to any other scientific theory, let alone whole branches of science. I don’t think we can reduce chemistry to physics, let alone biology to chemistry. Nevertheless we can also use concepts of one more general science to explain more particular features — e.g. we can quantum theory to explain why chemical bonds work as they do, and we can use biochemistry to explain why neurons work as they do, etc.

    For me, the question of naturalism comes down to the causal closure of the universe: does anything interact with spatio-temporal processes that is not itself a spatio-temporal process? That’s sufficient to hold the door closed against Cartesian substance dualism, libertarian freedom, and divine intervention. And that’s pretty much all I want naturalism to do.

    0
  10. This is how I interpret hyperfine. I could be dead wrong of course, but this is my first shot at trying to understand.

    When we see the spectral lines of hydrogen, those aren’t really solid lines but a few lines so close together they look like 1 line. So I presume the line/bar at 656 nm in the picture below is actually several lines so close they make it look like one line. Those small imperceptible lines at 656 nm that are so close together as to look like 1 line are the from the hyperfine differences in configuration of the atoms.

    Is that right?

    The birds are are apparently able to detect the slight differences in the hyperfine configurations in their CRY2-FAD machines that enables them to sense magnetic fields. The birds are able to combine optics and magenetic fields to enable them to “see” the magnetic fields.

    Ritz’s BRAVURA paper even attempted to depict visually what the bird would see when it bobs its head up and down! It’s like it could see a big glowing ball or something that is the location of the field source (like north or south pole). See figure 6 in Ritz’s paper!

    Humans have the CRY2-FAD protein/co-enzyme complexes like birds, but apparently don’t have or have lost the ability to utilize them for magnetic vision.

    I found the great Jedi Master himself, Richard Feyman explaining hyperfine structure in a printed lecture. I only got through the first couple of Feynman’s paragraphs, and my best interpretation is what I just said regarding the spectral lines. Any corrections are welcome.

    http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/III_12.html

    0

  11. Kantian Naturalist,

    Thank you again for your reply.

    However, such an evaluation in turn depends on whether we think our chemistry and physics are sufficiently complete for us to say that anything we didn’t predict on that basis therefore counts as “non-natural.”

    Understood.

    But to add a nuance, our chemistry and physics may be incomplete, but as stated and understood it is, in my opinion, not compatible with implicit claims that these laws make probable the origin of life and organic evolution. If one wishes to suggest operation of different set of laws than the ones taught in textbooks, that is fine. But what I see is an irreconcilable gap of contradiction between textbook physics and chemistry and the implicit (not explicit) notion that things evolve according to textbook chemistry and physics. Michael Behe’s and Jack Trevor’s work articulate that incompatibility. Trevors by the way, is an atheist biologist and Behe biochemist who believes in common descent (at least nominally).

    So, we could invoke incompleteness in our understanding of physics. I roughly called that a Black Swan. I don’t really have a better phrase for natural explanations far outside our present knowledge.

    Black Swan would at least be more a more reasonable reconciliation of the incompatibilities Trevers and Behe see. The question of whether there is a God or not probably cannot be formally resolved from any amount of facts available to mere mortals. Each person is left with placing their best guess (faith) in what they believe is the best explanation.

    0
  12. stcordova: A physicist by the name of Hoyle figuratively encapsulated the problem by saying it is NOT expected a tornado passing through a junkyard will create a 747. The meaning of the statement is that in like manner it is not the natural expectation that intricate, carefully connected machines will self assemble.

    Unless we have the expectation that an intelligence with a Super Dooper per leaf blower passing through a junkyard can create a 747, hard to see how the analogy has any traction.

    0
  13. newton: How did it turn out?

    What would you like me to say?
    It turned out well becasue you didn’t comment?
    Or, the discussion could have been better?

    0
  14. I found something confirming my understanding of hyperfine structure is correct:
    https://www.britannica.com/science/hyperfine-structure

    Hyperfine structure (HFS), in spectroscopy, the splitting of a spectral line into a number of components. The splitting is caused by nuclear effects and cannot be observed in an ordinary spectroscope without the aid of an optical device called an interferometer.

    The quantum aspect of this is that we have the spin axis of electrons or whatever being UP or DOWN, and nothing in between. It is thus Quantized.

    This is more plain vanilla QM and doesn’t have the more exotic things such as entanglement or retrocausality. That’s at least my understanding of the level of QM in Spin Chemistry and Magnetic perception.

    0
  15. stcordova:
    I found something confirming my understanding of hyperfine structure is correct:
    https://www.britannica.com/science/hyperfine-structure

    The quantum aspect of this is that we have the spin axis of electrons or whatever being UP or DOWN, and nothing in between.It is thus Quantized.

    This is more plain vanilla QM and doesn’t have the more exotic things such as entanglement or retrocausality.That’s at least my understanding of the level of QM in Spin Chemistry and Magnetic perception.

    Thanks Sal!
    I will look into it. It sound very intersting…

    0
  16. stcordova: The disagreement is whether magnetic navigation or any other sophisticated machine naturally arises based on the natural expectation of chemistry and physics.

    Why did you omit biology from what you consider natural?

    0
  17. Neil Rickert: Why did you omit biology from what you consider natural?

    I felt it was implicitly included when I said physics and chemistry, especially since I tend to be a reductionist.

    0
  18. J-Mac: What would you like me to say?
    It turned out well becasue you didn’t comment?
    Or,the discussion could have been better?

    Very hurtful.

    0
  19. Neil Rickert: Why did you omit biology from what you consider natural?

    I think that one way of framing the debate is around the question, “is biology natural?”

    The whole point of Dembski’s “explanatory filter” is to show that it isn’t, because “chance and necessity” can’t break some hypothetical upper limit on combinations that would yield complex specific information (or whatever it’s called these days).

    This is why the hardcore design theory folks are pinning their hopes and dreams on their criticisms of abiogenesis. It’s crucial to the whole story that abiogenesis required intelligent (i.e. divine) intervention.

    But this all depends on the priors — what does one take “physics and chemistry” to be?

    For my part, I really don’t see any insurmountable conceptual gap between the dynamics of self-organizing systems that maintain themselves at far from thermodynamic equilibrium (Prigogine got the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1977 for his work on these kinds of systems) and the dynamics of what Maturana and Varela call “autopoietic systems“, i.e. life.

    So with a different set of priors, there’s no difficulty in seeing biology as natural.

    0
  20. This is the caption from the bravura paper describing the in INFERRED way a bird might see the world with magnetic field sensing affecting its vision. It’s like seeing an inverse sunset where the North and South poles are.

    Figure 7. Visual modulation patterns through the geomagnetic field (0.5 G) for a bird flying parallel to the horizon at Urbana-Champaign (geomagnetic field inclination of 68°) and looking toward N, NE, E, SE, S, SW, W, and NW. The patterns have been evaluated assuming radical-pair receptors with anisotropic hyperfine couplings arranged in the eye model depicted in Fig. 5.

    0

  21. stcordova:
    Entropy is on my ignore list.His last comment is an example of why.

    I understand. You prefer not to have your idiocy displayed that clearly.

    0
  22. J-Mac:
    Anything can evolve as long as the belief in the natural selection’s omnipotence is kept alive by the faithful…

    You cannot fail to shoot yourself in the foot with those projections J-Mac. I always count on that.

    0
  23. Kantian Naturalist,

    I think that one way of framing the debate is around the question, “is biology natural?”

    The whole point of Dembski’s “explanatory filter” is to show that it isn’t,

    First, if I may take the time to stab my dear friend Bill Dembski in the back (just kidding), I don’t exactly frame my ID arguments like he does, and I’ve actively advocated against the formulation of ID in terms of the way my friends Dembski, Ewert, Marks, etc. frame ID.

    The way I frame the argument is that of machines and mount Rushmore. The machine’s operation or the structure of Mt. Rushmore do not require magic to persist and/or operate. They do require intelligence to assemble.

    Consider a simple system like a house of cards and the probability of making a house of cards. If the initial coordinates of each card in a set of cards are randomly chosen (x,y,z, pitch, yaw, roll) and the velocity coordinates of these (x_dot, y_dot, z_dot, pitch_dot, yaw_dot, roll_dot) and acceleration coordinates (….), they will not form a house of cards, most likely we’ll have cards EVOLVING to be laying flat on the floor (or some surface) from such an initial set of conditions.

    The NATURAL self organization from randomly selected coordinates is toward the equilibrium condition of the cards laying on the floor, mostly flat. The natural self organization is NOT toward a house of cards.

    This is fundamentally the problem with the origin of life, and some of the problems with evolution after the origin of life.

    Whether intelligence is required to make life I think is a formally undecidable question. But it’s well within science to say whether an outcome (like life arising spontaneously) is a high probability event. It is a philosophical/theological faith viewpoint if there exists some threshhold where some event is sufficiently improbable to invoke intelligence and/or God as an explanation. I don’t think formal answers are possible, we just make our best guess.

    0
  24. Entropy,

    I hope you waste hours of your life reading what I write and composing comments I’ll never read.

    Thank you TSZ for the ignore button! Bwahaha!

    0
  25. J-Mac,

    Not in this case as far as I can, it’s more plain vanilla QM like Hund’s Rule and Pauli Exclusion principle.

    0
  26. stcordova: WHOA!Physical review is the most prestigious physics journal to boot. Thanks!

    I’d thought you’d like that… 😁
    There is an experiment where they used special cages to disrupt quantum coherence in birds… I’ll try to find it…

    0
  27. Moved a comment to Guano. Attack ideas, fine! Attack other members, not fine!

    0
  28. I felt this encapsulated one of the major aspects of the Avian Magnetic Compass:

    The radical-pair mechanism explains how a magnetic field can affect reaction kinetics by affecting electron spin dynamics. Most commonly demonstrated in reactions of organic compounds involving radical intermediates, a magnetic field can speed up a reaction by decreasing the frequency of reverse reactions.

    From: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spin_chemistry

    But it’s worth pointing out, the detection of hyperfine configurations of the atom was only first detected by none other than nobel prize winner Albert Michelson (of Michelson-Morely fame) using an interferometer.

    Being able to do this sort of “interferometer” in a chemical context to be able to enhance vision requires several fine-tuned and well-conceived molecular devices. It does not seem reasonable a process of random mutation will achieve it as it requires some amount of 3-Dimension assembly of the molecular parts. It is analogous to the problem of the house of cards I mentioned.

    0
  29. Hmmm.
    i read the article. Where to start?
    I don’t think its likely, as the article quotes some, we can read magnetic stuff. I also question if creatures do this. i question the primitive experiments they did here.
    do birds, and the list they have, really see/use magnetic stuff to move about? Is this not really the old answer to HOW birds move about? i think birds move about by a great memory system and no magnetic help is needed. Hmmm.
    They gotta prove it. I question the author of the article carefully investigating this.
    Then genes gor magnetic reading? Hard to believe.
    By the way they list all the other creatures with this claimed ability.
    This means a convergence. Are they saying convergent evolution created in So many separate creatures the same ability?? All by selection on mutations?
    Could not iD/YEC say it shows powerfully common design??
    Hmmm.

    anyways one last time.
    Scordova. did you not have a special forum on the UD website back some years?
    If so I am interested in a thread about greenland bedrock morphology that was there near the end. is there any way to find this thread/papers linked to on this subject. I have asked before but get no answer.!

    0

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.