Gregory Seal G.Seal at NHM.AC.UK
Thu Jun 12 15:36:06 CDT 1997

Dear taxacomers,

I know that not everybody is a cladist, and therefore for them paraphyly
does not exist.  But if you do adhere to cladistic principles, why does
paraphyly still exist?  I can understand the need for taxonomic stability,
especially at higher taxon levels, but at the genus level why does this need
to be the case?  Part of the problem I think lies in the 'splitter and
lumper' debate, but to me, if there is consensus among the literature that a
genus is paraphyletic why is this problem sorted out? Paraphyly is a problem
but if we work together, hopefully it can be fixed and we may find that it
leads to a more 'useable' classification.

Thank you for your time

Greg Seal
Msc Advanced Taxonomy and Biodiversity
Natural History Museum (London)
E-mail G.Seal at

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