atom feed145 messages in edu.ku.nhm.mailman.taxacomRe: [Taxacom] Does the species name h...
FromSent OnAttachments
Roderic PageJun 18, 2012 11:18 am 
Quicke, Donald L JJun 18, 2012 11:45 am 
Frederick W. SchuelerJun 18, 2012 11:57 am 
Roderic PageJun 18, 2012 12:51 pm 
Roderic PageJun 18, 2012 12:51 pm 
Karen CranstonJun 18, 2012 1:09 pm 
Roderic PageJun 18, 2012 1:25 pm 
Stephen ThorpeJun 18, 2012 1:35 pm 
Chris ThompsonJun 18, 2012 2:28 pm 
Roger BurksJun 18, 2012 2:30 pm 
Stephen ThorpeJun 18, 2012 2:42 pm 
Doug YanegaJun 18, 2012 2:55 pm 
Vladimir GusarovJun 18, 2012 2:57 pm 
Roderic PageJun 18, 2012 3:02 pm 
Neal EvenhuisJun 18, 2012 3:11 pm 
Stephen ThorpeJun 18, 2012 3:14 pm 
David CampbellJun 18, 2012 3:17 pm 
Doug YanegaJun 18, 2012 3:23 pm 
Roderic PageJun 18, 2012 3:34 pm 
Stephen ThorpeJun 18, 2012 3:48 pm 
Roderic PageJun 18, 2012 3:51 pm 
Roderic PageJun 18, 2012 3:58 pm 
Stephen ThorpeJun 18, 2012 3:58 pm 
Stephen ThorpeJun 18, 2012 4:07 pm 
Stephen ThorpeJun 18, 2012 4:20 pm 
Stephen ThorpeJun 18, 2012 4:52 pm 
Stephen ThorpeJun 18, 2012 4:53 pm 
Stephen ThorpeJun 18, 2012 4:56 pm 
Bob MesibovJun 18, 2012 5:04 pm 
116 later messages
Subject:Re: [Taxacom] Does the species name have to change when it moves genus?
From:Roderic Page (r.p@bio.gla.ac.uk)
Date:Jun 18, 2012 12:51:06 pm
List:edu.ku.nhm.mailman.taxacom

Tradition doesn't seem a terribly compelling argument. Note that I'm not arguing
for uninomial nomenclature, just that we don't muck with the names once we've
coined them.

Regards

Rod

On 18 Jun 2012, at 19:57, Frederick W. Schueler wrote:

On 6/18/2012 2:18 PM, Roderic Page wrote:

OK, I know this is what we do, but my question is "why do we do this?"

* "Tradition." I think there was a song about this.

Uninominal nomenclature has been proposed...

Schueler, Frederick W., and James D. Rising. 1972. The stability of A.O.U. Checklist names for North American birds, and uninominal nomenclature. 26th Ontario Universities Biological Conference, Toronto. Published as: Rising, James D., and Frederick W. Schueler. 1972. How stable is binominal nomenclature? Systematic Zoology 21:438-439.

...the first revisor puts a hyphen between the genus and species names, and from then that hyphenated name is tied to the type of the binominal name it was formed from, and it doesn't change.

This never caught on, and I think the reason is the offense that's given by the mismatch between the generic name in the name (so to speak), and the different genus the species may be assigned to.

fred. ===========================================

As names change over time it becomes a major challenge to find everything
published about a taxon. Some groups, such as frogs, are especially prone to
name changes as their classification is unstable. Frogs have a pretty good
online database detailing name changes, but most animal groups lack this,
leaving people like me floundering around trying to make sense of multiple names
why may or may not be for the same thing.

It seems to me that names should be unique and stable. We don't change the name
of a species called "africanus" if we discover that the specimen locality was
actually from Australia, nor do we change the name "maximus" if we subsequently
discover a bigger species. But we do if we move it to a new genus. Why?

Presumably it's because we like the idea of being able to interpret the name -
two members of the same genus are presumably more closely related to each other
than to a species in a different genus. But demonstrably that is often untrue
(otherwise we wouldn't have all the name changes due to moving species to
different genera), and we've learnt not to interpret the name literally when
inferring any biological attributes, so why the desire to have the name match
some current notion of classification? Why not simply accept that we can't infer
relationships from the name?

It seems to be that if we simply stopped trying to make names reflect
classification, at a stroke we'd remove perhaps the primary cause of
nomenclatural instability. For example, the recent case of Drosophila
melanogaster would be a non-issue. It's "Drosophila melanogaster" regardles sof
whether it's nested in the part of the fly tree that includes Sophophora. The
relationships of the taxon would have no bearing on its name.

Discuss.

--------------------------------------------------------- Roderic Page Professor of Taxonomy Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences Graham Kerr Building University of Glasgow Glasgow G12 8QQ, UK

Email: r.p@bio.gla.ac.uk Tel: +44 141 330 4778 Fax: +44 141 330 2792 Skype: rdmpage AIM: rodp@aim.com Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1112517192 Twitter: http://twitter.com/rdmpage Blog: http://iphylo.blogspot.com Home page: http://taxonomy.zoology.gla.ac.uk/rod/rod.html

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--

fred

------------------------------------------------------------ Frederick W. Schueler & Aleta Karstad Bishops Mills Natural History Centre - http://pinicola.ca/bmnhc.htm Mudpuppy Night in Oxford Mills - http://pinicola.ca/mudpup1.htm Daily Paintings - http://karstaddailypaintings.blogspot.com/ South Nation Basin Art & Science Book http://pinicola.ca/books/SNR_book.htm RR#2 Bishops Mills, Ontario, Canada K0G 1T0 on the Smiths Falls Limestone Plain 44* 52'N 75* 42'W (613)258-3107 <bckcdb at istar.ca> http://pinicola.ca/

------------------------------------------------------------

------------------------------------------------------------

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--------------------------------------------------------- Roderic Page Professor of Taxonomy Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences Graham Kerr Building University of Glasgow Glasgow G12 8QQ, UK

Email: r.p@bio.gla.ac.uk Tel: +44 141 330 4778 Fax: +44 141 330 2792 Skype: rdmpage AIM: rodp@aim.com Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1112517192 Twitter: http://twitter.com/rdmpage Blog: http://iphylo.blogspot.com Home page: http://taxonomy.zoology.gla.ac.uk/rod/rod.html

_______________________________________________

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The Taxacom archive going back to 1992 may be searched with either of these
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