species/subspecies query

Zden�k Sk�la skala at INCOMA.CZ
Thu Nov 16 09:10:43 CST 2000

From: Curtis Clark:
> IMO there are only two legitimate positions: (1) Species are not actual
> units of nature, and so species concepts are hollow rhetoric and
> is not a real process; (2) Species are units of nature that originate
> through a process or processes that we call speciation, and we can
> formulate testable hypotheses that help us to understand both the
> and their products.

Hmm, I have met two more positions:
(3) Species are phenomena similar to e.g. position of  electron (in quantum
theory) - they exist, but only by "collapsing" the reality by the
observation event; so species do exist as an "interface" between the
observer and his environment, not as "units"
(4) Species are units of nature and we *cannot* formulate testable
hypotheses that help us to delimit them.
I am not sure what can be called "legitimate position" but am not very
satisfied with (3); I am afraid, on the other hand, that (4) is close to be

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