richard a fagerlund
fagerlun at UNM.EDU
Fri Dec 20 07:03:28 CST 1996
I have been reading the postings on shabby latin for a few days now.
I am not a botanist, I practice entomology. I think in both zoology and
botany, that we have lost sight of exactly what the primary function of
a taxonomist is. Simply, it is to provide names to organisms for future
use by research biologists and ecologists, nothing more, nothing less.
I believe a description should be thorough enough so the reader can
visualize the taxa without an illustration if necessary, but I also
believe whether there is a single latin word, or sentence, or if there
is one i or two ii's or if we use "and" or "&" is trivial and silly.
What use is a code that doesn't care whether a latin description is
unintelligible or not? I believe that maybe both the zoological code
and botanical code need to be seriously revised or scrapped altogether.
A description should be clear and concise in any language the describer
chooses. If I need to use his description, I'll get it translated.
I think we as taxonomists, take this business far to seriously. Taxonomy
should be fun, not tedius and trivial. If you find an undescribed
organism, describe it thoroughly and give it a name. Lets get rid of all
this stuffy and nonsensical poppycock. A few, simple rules of nomenclature
is fine, but some of this stuff is just silly.
We are naturalists that practice taxonomy for the sake of other biologists,
Richard Fagerlund Mail: 993 Orchid SW
University of New Mexico Rio Rancho, NM 87124
E-mail: fagerlun at unm.edu Phone: (505) 896-2524
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