[Taxacom] On genera

JF Mate aphodiinaemate at gmail.com
Mon Jul 15 11:22:14 CDT 2013


My biggest objection to a generic concept that seeks more than practical
outcomes is that it can lead to over-splitting if not tamed by the needs of
users. Further, "meaningful" concepts require a lot of information which is
mostly lacking except for the cute and cuddly, so entomologists (for
example but not exclusively) would be left in the cold. I´m afraid that it
will come down to users voting with their feet for stability and ease of
use.

Best

Jason


On 15 July 2013 17:43, Richard Zander <Richard.Zander at mobot.org> wrote:

>  Okay, that’s two of you who assume a genus concept as I proposed would
> result in a mass of monotypic genera. Why? Is it because you maybe think
> that a genus (or species) concept must apply to all genera (or species)
> across the board as impressed on nature by human will and our need to
> categorize along absolute lines? Or maybe you don’t but you expect others
> will. I don’t think so little of others.****
>
> ** **
>
> I think nature teaches us (if we will but learn) why genera are cohesive,
> or at least coherent, and that we will find that different genera are
> coherent for different reasons, different evolutionary processes. ****
>
> ** **
>
> ____________________________
> Richard H. Zander
> Missouri Botanical Garden, PO Box 299, St. Louis, MO 63166-0299 USA
> Web sites: http://www.mobot.org/plantscience/resbot/ and
> http://www.mobot.org/plantscience/bfna/bfnamenu.htm
> Modern Evolutionary Systematics Web site:
> http://www.mobot.org/plantscience/resbot/21EvSy.htm
> UPS and FedExpr -  MBG, 4344 Shaw Blvd, St. Louis 63110 USA****
>
>   ------------------------------
>
> *From:* Raymond Hoser - The Snakeman [mailto:viper007 at live.com.au]
> *Sent:* Sunday, July 14, 2013 5:32 PM
> *To:* Stephen Thorpe; Richard Zander; JF Mate; Taxacom
> *Subject:* RE: [Taxacom] On genera****
>
> ** **
>
>  I was thinking the same thing (see below)
>
> > >A genus may be defined, at least for some taxa, as a set of closely
> related species that evolves as a group<
> >
> > Sounds like a recipe for multitudes of monotypic genera!!
>
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>
> > Date: Sun, 14 Jul 2013 13:40:54 -0700
> > From: stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz
> > To: Richard.Zander at mobot.org; aphodiinaemate at gmail.com;
> taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
> > Subject: Re: [Taxacom] On genera
> >
> > >A genus may be defined, at least for some taxa, as a set of closely
> related species that evolves as a group<
> >
> > Sounds like a recipe for multitudes of monotypic genera!!
> >
> >
> > ________________________________
> > From: Richard Zander <Richard.Zander at mobot.org>
> > To: JF Mate <aphodiinaemate at gmail.com>; Taxacom <
> taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
> > Sent: Monday, 15 July 2013 8:19 AM
> > Subject: Re: [Taxacom] On genera
> >
> >
> >
> > Yes, "Others may disagree."
> >
> > A genus may be defined, at least for some taxa, as a set of closely
> related species that evolves as a group. Perhaps they all seem move in
> response to environmental change (say, all the cold-climate species die
> out, which changes the circumscription of the genus). Or perhaps one
> ancestral species gave rise to many specialized species. One CAN make good
> hypotheses based on data that may be non-phylogenetically informative.
> >
> > These less than exact definitions should be considered because
> cladistics cannot determine monophyly since no ancestral nodes are named.
> Phylogenetic monophyly then is done by definition, not by empirical
> inference; that is, every clade is monophyletic, period.
> >
> > What drives people to accept this nonsense?
> >
> >
> > 
> >
> > ____________________________
> > Richard H. Zander
> > Missouri Botanical Garden, PO Box 299, St. Louis, MO 63166-0299 USA
> > Web sites: http://www.mobot.org/plantscience/resbot/and
> http://www.mobot.org/plantscience/bfna/bfnamenu.htm
> > Modern Evolutionary Systematics Web site:
> http://www.mobot.org/plantscience/resbot/21EvSy.htm
> > UPS and FedExpr -  MBG, 4344 Shaw Blvd, St. Louis 63110 USA
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu [mailto:
> taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of JF Mate
> > Sent: Thursday, July 11, 2013 9:22 PM
> > To: Taxacom
> > Subject: [Taxacom] On genera
> >
> > ... what is a genus? I would say that divergence times are irrelevant. My
> > own view is that a genus is just a convenient monophyletic grouping of
> > species, i.e. not too big, not too small, and easily recognisable. Others
> > may disagree ...
> >
> > I would strongly agree that it is a taxonomic convenience so we can
> > communicate better and break down biodiversity for our understanding. I
> > would disagree with the need for monophyly though, and rather push for
> > non-polyphyletic genera, at least until taxonomists show some restraint
> > naming genera, or at least an equal enthusiasm for synonymizing them.
> > Otherwise simplicity and ease of use will be jeopardised in the name of
> > phylogenetic correctnes. As a final note, when we talk about easily
> > recognisable, maybe it should be stressed that it is for the
> non-specialist
> > (in the particular group that is).
> >
> > My two cents
> >
> > Jason
> > _______________________________________________
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> >
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> >
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> >
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> > Celebrating 26 years of Taxacom in 2013.
> > _______________________________________________
> > Taxacom Mailing List
> > Taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
> > http://mailman.nhm.ku.edu/mailman/listinfo/taxacom
> >
> > The Taxacom Archive back to 1992 may be searched with either of these
> methods:
> >
> > (1) by visiting http://taxacom.markmail.org
> >
> > (2) a Google search specified as: site:
> mailman.nhm.ku.edu/pipermail/taxacom your search terms here
> >
> > Celebrating 26 years of Taxacom in 2013.****
>



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