How to be taxonomist in a non-taxonomic world?

Thomas Schlemmermeyer termites at USP.BR
Fri Jan 29 12:37:57 CST 1999


 Recently it was deplored: The gradual extinction of taxonomists. Often
 the guilt has been put on the external conditions, no one dared to accuse
 the taxonomists themselves for their tragedy.

 However, science (in the world I lived so far, at least, i. e. Brazil and
 Germany) is said to be hypotheto-deductive. The models and theories must
 be widereaching, predictions always have to be made (even if their use may  be
in doubt),the results have to get in fast (for whatever they may

 Taxonomy, however, needs patience and descriptive skills.

 So, besides the self-regret and crying, are there any practical hints,
 or suggestions, how to be a taxonomist in a primarily non taxonomic


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