[Taxacom] Important note Re: two names online published - one new species

Hans Henderickx cavexplorer at gmail.com
Thu Jan 28 03:41:24 CST 2016

Subject: RE: [Taxacom] Important note Re: two names online published - one new species

I started this whole ongoing discussion ultimately about what name this single new Strepsiptera taxon will bear, since it is described twice using different samples by different authors. Both publications have a different online publishing and print date, around newyear, so two years are involved. I understood there is a certain consensus about the priority of author Pohl, althoug author Engel published this species already online months before, in 2015, but he forgot to mention some metadata, therefore leaving the proposed name unavailable (correct me if I am wrong).

My contribution here was top point out, as a third party, that both specimens actually belong to the same species (with the species name now under discussion).

I have two more of the same Cretaceous Strepsiptera taxon here on my desk, a species that appeared not to be very rare in Cretaceous Burmese amber. All specimens look basically the same, if you leave out the individual variation and the fact that they fossilized different, and are visible only under different angles. An X-ray micro-CT would be helpfull, as in Eocenoxenos palintropos, another Strepsiptera fossil. 

It's a well known problem, 
Most amber fossils from that age (Cretaceous) have been squeezed, been under 
the influence of temperatures and pressure and they all look like different 
species at first glance. They are often deformed, flattened, or assymetric, 
wich is clearly visible in these publications. Engel illustrates the eyes 
with two dark pictures (no line drawings of this part), taken from a 
different corner, and he calls them 'large'. Engel mentions the number of 
ommatidia (more than 50),  Pohl makes line drawings of the head with eyes, 
he does not mention the number of ommatidia but there are also more than 50 
countable on his drawing and he writes "eyes relatively small" The head is 
deformed and assymetrical, see drawing 7B. There is usually a certain 
tolerancy handled in descriptions of Cretaceous amber fossils (Mark Judson, 
personal communication), otherwise nothing can be described, no complete 
dinosaur has ever been found.

Both Strepsiptera species have the about the same size (3mm vs 2,67 mm), the 
same orthognatous heads with the same typical shape, also the short 
eight-segmented antenna and flabella are identical as well as the genital 
region, the wing shape and the wing venation. The same goes for the maxilla 
and the mandibulae, again, based on the different kinds of illustrations of 
both authors. They are from the same era and from the same mining. Besides, 
this species is not particulary rare in Burmese amber, and I am convinced they are the same species.

Hans Henderickx

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Stephen Thorpe" <stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz>
To: "Damien HINSINGER" <hin175 at free.fr>; "Ian Harrison" <iharrison at amnh.org>
Cc: "John Noyes" <j.noyes at nhm.ac.uk>; <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
Sent: Thursday, January 28, 2016 5:51 AM
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Important note Re: two names online published - one new species

> The discussion is ultimatley about definition. You can't understand the Code without understanding what definitions are, and how they function. A range of examples may help to understand this. Anyway, blame Rich, he brought up the example! But hey, we're all liberal minded adults around here, aren't we, or are we?
> Stephen
> --------------------------------------------
> On Thu, 28/1/16, Ian Harrison <iharrison at amnh.org> wrote:
> Subject: RE: [Taxacom] Important note Re: two names online published - one new species
> To: "Stephen Thorpe" <stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz>, "Damien HINSINGER" <hin175 at free.fr>
> Cc: "John Noyes" <j.noyes at nhm.ac.uk>, "taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu" <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
> Received: Thursday, 28 January, 2016, 5:36 PM
> What!!? 
> I thought the discussion was about science and metadata ...
> for a taxonomy based listserve. I see a pretty 'sharp
> definition' there - it is a listserve that discusses
> taxonomy.
> Get back on track.
> Ian

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