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First, the scientists extracted and measured the amount of DNA in 158 tibiotarsus leg bones of extinct moa, 12-foot, flightless birds that once roamed New Zealand.

Next, they used radiocarbon dating to calculate the ages of the bones, which ranged from about 650 years old to 7,000 years old.

Judging by the settlements’ lofty location, along with their architectural features and artifacts, archaeologists believe they were built by early Numic-speaking peoples, the mountain-dwelling ancestors of the diverse but related tribes that today include the Comanche, Ute, Shoshone and Northern Paiute.

And because scientists need long stretches of DNA to replicate it, they estimate that the oldest usable DNA will actually be one to two million years old.

The record holder right now is DNA found in ice cores, at 500,000 years old.

Two states (Tennessee and Louisiana) and multiple school districts have adopted this policy of academic freedom, teaching about legitimate disagreements among mainstream scientists.

But when did a little thing like accuracy trouble a Darwin activist equipped with a media bullhorn?

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