[Taxacom] paraphylophobia again

Richard Zander Richard.Zander at mobot.org
Mon Jul 20 09:09:18 CDT 2009

This discussion seems librarianish (pace librarians may they be
blessed). Try substituting "good taxon" for "paraphyletic taxon" and see
if what that group means to you changes. 

A good taxon to a phylogeneticist is one that has a sister group at the
same taxonomic level. Is that what we are talking about? Or have
evolutionary concepts involving phylogenetically uninformative traits
crept in to our thoughts, and there is a taint of common sense in some
of our hesitation about accepting paraphyletic groups?

If one is a pattern cladist, then one should not waffle. One needs to
reject phylogenetically uninformative, unique traits entirely, and
create a classification that ignores, rejects, and abominates the idea
of one taxon giving rise to another.

Richard H. Zander 
Voice: 314-577-0276
Missouri Botanical Garden
PO Box 299
St. Louis, MO 63166-0299 USA
richard.zander at mobot.org
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and http://www.mobot.org/plantscience/bfna/bfnamenu.htm
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-----Original Message-----
From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
[mailto:taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of Curtis Clark
Sent: Sunday, July 19, 2009 11:23 PM
Cc: taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] paraphylophobia again

On 2009-07-19 14:05, Stephen Thorpe wrote:
> To retain a paraphyletic "Reptilia" has nothing to do with  
> "remainders", but rather simply ignores the fact that Mammalia and  
> Aves both clearly belong to monophyletic subgroups of "Reptilia".

Agreed. If I'm reading you right, I don't have any issue with your 
paraphyletic remainders.

Curtis Clark                  http://www.csupomona.edu/~jcclark/
Director, I&IT Web Development                   +1 909 979 6371
University Web Coordinator, Cal Poly Pomona


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