[Taxacom] Economist leader addressed to taxonomists

Geoff Read g.read at niwa.co.nz
Fri May 18 03:13:12 CDT 2007

If the Economist leader writer's example of primate subspecies to 
species derived at some remove from the Isaac, Mallet & Mace taxonomic 
inflation article in 2004, Tree 19(9):464-469, where there is a side box 
on primates, then, as I read it, that wasn't what IMM actually said. 
Their case in the box was principally that the phylogenetic species 
concept had doubled the number of species, or, with a hint of 
disapproval, 'inflated' it in their words.

IMM's opening two sentences in bold type in the paraphrase of the main 
article (the known subspecies to species taxonomic inflation thing 
again) has me perplexed. The 2nd sentence seems completely out of touch 
with reality.

"Species numbers are increasing rapidly. This is due
mostly to taxonomic inflation, where known subspecies
are raised to species as a result in a change in species
concept, rather than to new discoveries."

   Geoff Read <g.read at niwa.co.nz>

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