[Taxacom] New species descriptions based on only 1 specimen

murrellze murrellze at appstate.edu
Tue Sep 30 21:19:42 CDT 2008


If we view names as a way to "red-flag" a putative clade/species, then 
it seems best to name it, if you know the "known" or published diversity 
in the parent clade/genus .  Then others (ecologists, population 
biologists) can realize a need to examine the new putative species (i.e. 
test your hypothesis).

Zack Murrell

Jean-Michel Maes wrote:
> Hi,
>
> Difficult to answer by yes or no. In theory, it's not a good idea to
> describe a species on 1 specimen. But... In the case of a revision, better
> to describe the species available, even if there is only one specimen, so
> all species are available to play with. Another person can find the way to
> rear the species or to collect more and confirm the validity of the species
> or put it as a synonym of another species. I know it's not an election, but
> my vote would be to describe the species, even on an orphan specimen.
>
> Sincerely,
>
> Jean-Michel.
>
> Dr. Jean-Michel MAES
> MUSEO ENTOMOLOGICO
> AP 527
> LEON
> NICARAGUA
> tel 505-3116586
> cel 505-48-11-351
> jmmaes at ibw.com.ni
> jmmaes at bio-nica.info
> jmmaes at yahoo.com
> jmmaes at walla.com
>
> www.bio-nica.info (main page in spanish)
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> inscribirse si le parece)
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> http://www.coleoptera.org/p1760.htm (Lucanidae genera)
>
> Save a tree. Do not print this message if not really necessary
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Geoff Read" <g.read at niwa.co.nz>
> To: <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
> Sent: Tuesday, September 30, 2008 5:10 PM
> Subject: Re: [Taxacom] New species descriptions based on only 1 specimen
>
>
>   
>>>>> On 1/10/2008 at 8:17 a.m., Steve Lingafelter
>>>>>           
>> <steve.lingafelter at ars.usda.gov>
>> wrote:
>>     
>>> Hi Taxacomers,
>>> I realize this is a tired debate, but nevertheless...
>>>
>>> I'm interested in some current opinions.  I am at the final stages of
>>>       
>> data
>>     
>>> collection for a field guide to Dominican Republic
>>>       
>> Cerambycidae...however,
>>     
>>> I've got a handful of very charismatic new species which are sadly,
>>>       
>> after 10
>>     
>>> expeditions (4 by our group; several by Carnegie Museum and
>>>       
>> Harvard),
>>     
>>> represented by only 1 specimen each.
>>>
>>> I want to describe them and have them available for the field guide
>>>       
>> but I
>>     
>>> realize this is not an ideal situation (and I believe not accepted by
>>>       
>> some
>>     
>>> journals).  Am I making a mountain out of a mole-hill, and should I
>>>       
>> just
>>     
>>> describe the darned things?
>>>
>>> What would you do?
>>>       
>> No, it's certainly not mountain out of mole-hill. It's a serious issue.
>> I wouldn't never do it, but best avoided in annelids, the group I work
>> with, because of meristic and developmental changes, and also noting the
>> difficulty of borrowing a holotype with no paratype. Also there is the
>> possibility a strange individual is a teratology and not new at all.
>> Incomplete tail-less specimens are a particular problem for later
>> workers when described - as has been done frequently, but against that
>> there are families in which complete individuals from offshore benthos
>> are almost never collected - can't just ignore a whole family.
>>
>> Here's a paper discussing species description standards which inter
>> alia addresses the single specimen problem:
>>
>> Mąkol, J. ; Gabryś, G. 2005:  Intuition or fixed criteria – about
>> standards in species description.  Genus 16(4): 503-511.
>>
>> http://www.biol.uni.wroc.pl/cassidae/Fixed%20criteria.pdf
>>
>> Geoff
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> --
>>
>>  Geoff Read <g.read at niwa.co.nz>
>>    http://www.annelida.net/
>>   http://www.niwascience.co.nz/ncabb/
>>
>>
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>
>
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