[Taxacom] Phylocriminetics

Stephen Thorpe stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz
Wed Dec 29 14:55:45 CST 2010


compared to the biodiversity crisis and then the bioinformatics data conflict 
crisis, paraphyly does not seem to be such a big problem ...

those who have the skills and resources to do primary taxonomy should do so, 
urgently, and some other people (like myself) should urgently try to organize 
the information in a useful manner ...


From: Richard Pyle <deepreef at bishopmuseum.org>
To: Richard Zander <Richard.Zander at mobot.org>; Stephen Thorpe 
<stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz>; taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
Sent: Thu, 30 December, 2010 9:41:29 AM
Subject: RE: [Taxacom] Phylocriminetics

> How does retaining some paraphyletic groups for taxonomic classification
> purposes aid science? Which comes first, taxonomy or science?

The discovery and documentation of biodiversity should ALWAYS come first. I
don't care whether you label this taxonomy, or classify it as
science....what matters is that as populations of organisms disappear (as
they are currently doing at perhaps unprecedented rates), the vast, vast
majority of them will leave absolutely no trace of their existence.  Like
burning the last copy of a book, whatever secrets they had to share within
the "pages" of their genomes will be lost forever.

Hypothesizing relationships and speculating about theoretical underpinnings
of inferred evolutionary processes are nice intellectual endeavors, but
should take a back seat to pure discovery and documentation.



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