[Taxacom] Generic type of large genus belongs in different genus

Kim van der Linde kim at kimvdlinde.com
Sun Apr 7 15:08:59 CDT 2013


I would leave the mess the mess that it is, specifically because there 
are more skeletons in the closest (non-monophyly).

Alternatively, if you feel strong about keeping the three species 
together, I would move those, decide on a new genus name for the 
remaining species, and write down the diagnostic criteria for the new 
genus. Names change, so if the new genus needs to be split in the 
future, so be it. Just remember, what you would do is make a proposal. 
It is up to others whether they want to follow it or not.

Stability of names for the larger biology community is not a criteria in 
how to deal with this (see the Sophophora melanogaster case). The only 
criteria is what the codes tell us to do. I would leave it a mess until 
someone examines the genus as a whole before making any changes.


On 4/7/2013 1:52 PM, Alan Harvey wrote:
> Greetings,
> This is probably a straightforward issue, but I haven't dealt with
> nomenclatural issues for a while and I seem to keep getting lost in the
> Code.
> Several years ago, I discovered that, along with three other species, the
> type species for a large, worldwide genus (well over 100 species) clearly
> didn't belong in the same genus as the others. Unfortunately, the type
> species itself  is relatively unknown, and two of its three relatives were
> as yet undescribed, whereas the genus s.l. contains many common, well
> studied species.
> Well, I changed my research focus without ever dealing with this issue.
> Recently, however, I found that one of these species (not the generic type,
> though) was placed, without comment, into a new genus erected to solve a
> different problem involving taxa on the other side of the planet.
> So if the placement of "my" species into this new genus is correct, then we
> have a small, distinct genus that should contain the type species of a
> different, much larger genus (actually, we had this problem before, but now
> the small genus unfortunately has a name!).
> It seems to me that a strict interpretation of the Code says that the
> original genus name should be drastically restricted to the handful of
> species related to the original type species, and that the other 100+
> species should get a different name. In addition to the "*Brontosaurus*"
> problem, though, there's no reason to assume that all these other species
> represent a monophyletic group, so it's not clear that giving them all some
> other generic name is correct either (and I don't foresee a monographic
> treatment of this genus anytime soon!).
> Any suggestions as to how this should best be handled?
> Thanks very much!
> Cheers,
> Alan

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