Value of 'naming'

Robin Panza panzar at CLPGH.ORG
Sun Jul 14 10:00:02 CDT 1996

Richard Jensen wrote:
>I don't recall the details, but I seem to remember that the AOU had a set
>of standardized common names for birds.  I am not proposing that we

The AOU has standard English-language names for bird of North America.  If the
same species occurs in England, it may have a different "standard" English-
language name.  If it also occurs in other European countries, it may also have
a "standard" French, German, Dutch, Italian, Danish etc. name.  Birds in other
parts of the world may or may not have any standard name, and that may or may
not be in English.

Even standardizing North American species names was quite difficult, as there
were many people who refused to give up well-loved local names just because the
AOU wanted to use another.  The AOU and BOU (I think) are trying to come to
agreement on names for species in both areas, but little progress is being
made, as each country thinks theirs is the better name.

And that's with a taxon that includes only 9000 species, most of them

Robin Panza             panzar at
Section of Birds
Carnegie Museum of Natural History
Pittsburgh  PA  USA  15213

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