Doug Yanega dyanega at POP.UCR.EDU
Mon Mar 13 10:43:01 CST 2000


I don't see anything about the evidence for them being descended from
Mecoptera (I seem to recall Boreids being the molecular sister taxon). All
it says is "Fleas form a separate well-differentiated order, although
phylogenetically they are regarded to be closer to Diptera and Mecoptera."
- which is misleading, since one way or the other (either traditionally or
in the new view), they make one of those orders paraphyletic. That means
that no matter how you cut it, they aren't justifiably a separate order -
if every "well-differentiated" monophyletic clade out there was made an
order, things would be a real mess. Where's a cladist when you need one?


Doug Yanega        Dept. of Entomology         Entomology Research Museum
Univ. of California - Riverside, Riverside, CA 92521
phone: (909) 787-4315 (standard disclaimer: opinions are mine, not UCR's)
  "There are some enterprises in which a careful disorderliness
        is the true method" - Herman Melville, Moby Dick, Chap. 82

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