[Taxacom] Taxonomic Anarchy and which group do you work on? Also, outreach to conservationists
scott.thomson321 at gmail.com
Sun Jun 4 15:44:07 CDT 2017
Of note on this is that apart from being a misrepresentation on inverts and
plants, the assumptions made with birds and mammals is also not
representative of other vertebrates. Reptiles, amphibians and fish may be
smaller in number than invert groups but the knowledge of their numbers of
species is still low.
On Jun 4, 2017 3:15 PM, "Tim Dickinson" <tim.dickinson at utoronto.ca> wrote:
> Thank you Laurent for this reality check. Is it significant that
> Christidis works on birds? Maybe so. There is a recent attempt at
> comprehensive phylogeny of birds that appeard to be well-founded (
> https://pandasthumb.org/archives/2016/01/last-year-we-ta.html). Also, the
> number of bird species world-wide is perhaps less than 1/20 the number of
> vascular plant species worlwide, and less than 1% of the the number of
> invertebrate species world-wide (https://www.factmonster.com/s
> cience/animals/estimated-number-animal-and-plant-species-earth). Working
> with such a relatively small, well-studied, charismatic, macroscopic,
> warm-blooded group might make its taxonomy seem like it could be cast in
> stone (law). Maybe that's even the case.
> In other larger, sometimes less accessible, and hence less well-studied
> groups of organisms the situation is very different, as indicated by many
> of the responses on this list. One of the things prospective authors of a
> "rebuttal" should perhaps consider is how to convey this variation in
> numbers and the extents to which we "know" the systematics (evolutionary
> history) underlying the diversity. Likewise, as several commenters have
> mentioned, it might be useful also to try to engage groups concerned with
> conservation (and agriculture and pharmacognosy and ...) in the effort.
> My two cents' worth.
>> Re: [Taxacom] Taxonomy Anarchy
>> Laurent Raty <l.raty at skynet.be>
>> 2017-06-04, 8:51 AM
>> taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
>> On 06/02/2017 04:04 PM, KD Dijkstra wrote:
>>> What I find notable about most responses (Donat’s and Francisco’s are
>>> the exceptions) is that they shout “rebuttal!” without actually
>>> the faults and especially merits of the comment. The piece is easy to
>>> trash* as the authors’ understanding of systematics, conservation and
>>> evolution appears about as sophisticated as Noah’s back in the day of the
>>> great flood, but [...]
>> Another thing that is notable about most responses is that they assume
>> that the Nature piece was written by 'environmentalists' or
>> 'conservationists' with no or little knowledge of taxonomy.
>> Not so, thus.
>> Cheers, Laurent -
> <Tim Dickinson
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