Are species real?

Richard Pyle deepreef at BISHOPMUSEUM.ORG
Thu Apr 13 08:28:57 CDT 2006

I understand the relevance of Systems Theory to biology and biological
systematics.  But I don't see how the application of such will help us
address the question of "reality" of taxa (at least in the context of how I
perceive the "reality of taxa" debate). Could you explain how you think it
(a Systems Theory approach) would help us discern whether species (and other
taxa) are "real" (=natural) entities, as opposed to human-defined

If you're thinking in terms of understanding the dynamics of gene flow
within and among populations over time, I wonder how practical that approach
would be for the vast majority of biodiversity.


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Taxacom Discussion List [mailto:TAXACOM at LISTSERV.NHM.KU.EDU]On
> Behalf Of Jan Metlevski
> Sent: Thursday, April 13, 2006 7:53 AM
> Subject: Re: Are species real?
> People, the General Systems Theory could help to understand about
> reality of
> species as well as taxa of any other level.  It is just amazing
> that many biologists,
> and systematist as well, still even don't know what the Systems
> Theory is about.
> Regards
> Jan

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