[Taxacom] Usefulness vs. convenience (Protista)

Tony.Rees at csiro.au Tony.Rees at csiro.au
Sun Dec 19 17:23:51 CST 2010

Hi Kleo,

>      Also, anyone know who is classifying Rhodophyta as other than
> plants these days?

Actually I was thinking Protoctista in the Margulis sense in particular when I wrote that sentence, e.g. see http://books.google.com.au/books?id=y55Efu3baksC&pg=PA183&lpg=PA183 , tempered with other recent molecular-based schemes where viridaeplantae, not archaeplastida (or equivalent) are separated out from the other protist / eukaryote lineages (though I cannot specifically recall which, and am possibly mis-remembering here). On the other hand as we have just seen, Ken's treatment does have them in kingdom Protista, possibly others do as well...

In practical terms it does affect the kingdom level allocation of this and a number of other groups - e.g. are the rhodophytes to be classified within Plantae, Prot[oct]ista, or somewhere else, same with e.g. the brown algae and other heterokont groups (formerly Plantae, now either Chromista or Protista) etc. etc. These things need to be formalised for the purpose of constructing management classifications e.g. Catalogue of Life and similar systems which use Linnean ranks, even if they can of course change with new knowledge.

Regards - Tony

> -----Original Message-----
> From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu [mailto:taxacom-
> bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of Kenneth Kinman
> Sent: Monday, 20 December 2010 10:07 AM
> To: taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
> Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Usefulness vs. convenience (Protista)
> Hi Kleo,
>         Actually, you would be surprised how many people
> still classify Rhodophyta outside of Plantae (but not outside of
> "plants", since they are clearly "plants"). One such major website is
> that of the University of California Museum of Paleontology. If you
> click on the link below, you will see that although they don't actually
> use the term Protista on this Eukaryota systematics page, they do have a
> bunch of  "protist" groups (including Rhodophyta and others) but with
> the four Kingdoms (Animalia, Plantae, Fungi, and Chromista) spelled in
> capital letters. And I was VERY happy to see that their Kingdom Plantae
> is the same as my Kingdom Metaphyta (land plants, i.e. embryophytes). So
> they also exclude the green algae (Chlorophyta) from Kingdom Plantae
> (Metaphyta) as well as the Rhodophyta.
>         And if you look at the Kingdom Protista
> classification that I posted here a few hours ago, you will see that I
> include Glaucophyta, Rhodophyta, and Chlorophyta in a broader plant
> clade with the exgroup {{Metaphyta}}. So I do consider them all plants.
> If you go broader than that, it gets "iffy" whether other "plants" are
> closely related or not. Maybe the haptophytes and cryptophytes are (if
> the tree of Minge et al, 2009 is accurate in showing them as sister
> group to Glaucophyta). But some other algae (part of "plants" sensu
> lato), such as  Chrysophyceae, Phaeophyceae, and Xanthophyceae, are in
> Phylum Heterokonta and not part of the plant clade at all.  I was rather
> shocked that the Encyclopedia of Life  seems to include Chrysophyceae in
> Plantae.  YIKES!!!  I didn't think anybody did that any more.
>                     ---------Ken
> http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/alllife/eukaryotasy.html
> P.S. I am obviously one of those skeptics who have long regarded
> Chromista as an inconclusive (even doubtful) grouping, even though it
> seemed based on cladistically reliable data (including molecular).  Now
> after almost 30 years, it finally seems to be falling apart, and having
> been raised to Kingdom status, I would also call it inconvenient.  All
> those textbooks with Kingdom Chromista will probably have to soon be
> rewritten.   And I expect the Three Kingdom classification will
> eventually also fall out of favor, when it becomes clear that there is
> nothing "archaic" about "Archaebacteria" ("Archaea").  And that is
> something Cavalier-Smith and I have always agreed upon, and he thinks
> that they evolved even later than I do.  So it is seems odd that he
> never adopted the name Metabacteria for them.  Oh well.
> ----------------------------------------------
> Kleo wrote:
>      Also, anyone know who is classifying Rhodophyta as other than
> plants these days?
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