unique numbers for species

Michael Schmitt m.schmitt at UNI-BONN.DE
Fri Oct 12 13:45:52 CDT 2001

At 15:29 11.10.01 -0400, Robin Kanza wrote:
>>>>>From: Markku Savela [mailto:msa at BURP.TKV.ASDF.ORG]
>Why numbers? Why not just use the "the unique identifier" which
>already exists: the original published name with author and year.<<<
>Because as soon as someone splits the species into two, you have two taxa
>with identical identifier.

This is true, but it applies to numbers, too. Whether the species
_Chrysomela populi_ is split into two or 'species 2341' does not matter at
all. This leads me to the question: is there any argument in favour of
numbers or against the originally published names that does not likewise
apply to the opposite? Up to now, I did not see any. Thus, since we already
have the originally published names, and the ICZN provides - in article 79
- the possibility to overcome the difficulties in tracing the old names by
building Lists of Available Names, why establish an additional system of

                                        Michael Schmitt

* Dr. Michael Schmitt (Zoologischer Anzeiger, Managing Editor) *
* Zoologisches Forschungsinstitut und Museum Alexander Koenig  *
* Adenauerallee 160, D-53113 Bonn, Germany                     *
* Phone/Fax: +49 228-9122 286, e-mail: m.schmitt at uini-bonn.de  *
* http://www.uni-bonn.de/museumkoenig/mit/enavmit.htm          *

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