[Taxacom] Some whimsical questions

Paul van Rijckevorsel dipteryx at freeler.nl
Mon Mar 4 02:12:06 CST 2019


Yes, and more so, the zoological Code defines
a synonym as a name of the same rank, while
the ICNafp accepts names of all ranks (lots of
ranks below that of species, and all these ranks
can contain synonyms of a species name, or vice
versa).

Unless otherwise specified, a synonym to me
is a name listed in the synonymy of a valid /
correct name. So to me the valid / correct name
is not a synonym of itself.

Paul

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Richard Pyle" <deepreef at bishopmuseum.org>
To: "'Francisco Welter-Schultes'" <fwelter at gwdg.de>;
<taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
Sent: Friday, March 1, 2019 7:50 PM
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Some whimsical questions


> This thread touches on an issue that always causes confusion when talking
> about synonyms of taxonomic names (especially in informatics contexts --
> i.e., databases).  Specifically, what counts as a "synonym"?
>
> A convention used more often in botanical/fungal/algal conversations is to
> refer to "heterotypic" synonyms vs. "homotypic" synonyms.  In general, the
> former represent what zoologists sometimes refer to as "subjective"
> synonyms (i.e., different species-group names, which are synonyms
> according to taxonomic opinion), and the latter don't really have a label
> in zoology, but generally (though not exclusively) represent "subsequent
> combinations" (i.e., same species-group name, different genus name --
> which of course is also subjective taxonomic opinion).  However, a subset
> of homotypic synonyms are what zoologists refer to as "replacement names",
> wherein a junior homonym is replaced by a new name that shares the same
> type.  And then there are a few rare cases where two different
> species-group names happen to share the same type specimen (several
> examples I'm aware of in fishes). These are included in what zoologists
> refer to as "objective" synonyms.
>
> Then there's the question of "junior" synonyms vs. "senior" synonyms (a
> convention that I believe is more common in zoology) to distinguish the
> "valid" (="accepted") name (senior synonym) from the
> non-valid/non-accepted "junior" synonym(s).  But do you count the "senior"
> synonym among the total number of "synonyms"?  Or just the "junior"
> synonyms?
>
> Then we have other issues where some might think of two names as synonyms,
> and others might not.  For example, are the names "Aus bus" and "Aus (Xus)
> bus" synonyms of each other?  What about alternate spellings -- do they
> count as synonyms?
>
> These examples are in addition to the others already raised (subspecies,
> available/validly-published, etc.)
>
> It sure would be nice if we could come up with clear and unambiguous terms
> to categorize the various types of "synonyms", even just within a
> Code-space (e.g., within zoology) -- but ideally across Codes.  As it
> stands, the unqualified word "synonym" is almost as ambiguous as the word
> "name" in this context.  For the love of God, don't get me started on all
> the different and incompatible things people mean when they refer to "a
> name" in the context of scientific nomenclature.
>
> Aloha,
> Rich
>
> Richard L. Pyle, PhD
> Database Coordinator | Associate Zoologist | Dive Safety Officer
> Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum
> 1525 Bernice Street, Honolulu, HI 96817-2704
> Office: (808) 848-4115;  Fax: (808) 847-8252
> eMail: deepreef at bishopmuseum.org
> BishopMuseum.org
>
> Our Mission: Bishop Museum inspires our community and visitors through the
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>
>
>
>
>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Taxacom [mailto:taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of
>> Francisco Welter-Schultes
>> Sent: Thursday, February 28, 2019 3:10 PM
>> To: taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
>> Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Some whimsical questions
>>
>> There should be around 500 synonyms for the land gastropod Helix pomatia,
>> if I remember well, but I do not have the source for this number off
>> hand. I
>> recall from somewhere far back this was the example for the highest
>> number
>> of synonyms. One century ago European molluscs suffered what we would
>> call
>> taxonomic vandalism today, every slightly different shell was named.
>> David
>> reported the same for freshwater molluscs.
>>
>> Cheers
>> Francisco
>>
>> -----
>> Francisco Welter-Schultes
>>
>> Am 01.03.2019 um 01:42 schrieb John Oswald:
>> > The record-holder in the Neuropterida (Insecta: Neuroptera,
>> > Megaloptera,
>> and Raphidioptera) will surely be the species currently known as
>> Chrysoperla
>> carnea, which is the common Old World green lacewing species that can be
>> abundant in agricultural fields.
>> >
>> > My database shows 219 distinct synonyms for this species. Each synonym
>> > is
>> a "distinct combination", i.e., any unique combination of available
>> and/or
>> unavailable genus- and species-group names (genus, subgenus, species,
>> subspecies, variety, etc.).
>> >
>> > The 219 combinations contain a total of 82 unique species-group names,
>> > of
>> which 69 are available and 13 are unavailable. Of the 69 available
>> species-
>> group names, 53 have been used at species rank (without subspecies) in at
>> least one combination.
>> >
>> > So, 53 synonyms in Doug's restricted sense. This also highlights Doug's
>> observation that the number of synonyms can increase dramatically when
>> one
>> considers subspecies, unavailable names, etc.
>> >
>> > John
>> >
>> > ---oo0oo---
>> >
>> > John D. Oswald
>> > Professor of Entomology
>> > Curator, Texas A&M University Insect Collection Department of
>> > Entomology Texas A&M University College Station, TX  77843-2475
>> >
>> > E-mail: j-oswald at tamu.edu
>> > Phone: 1-979-862-3507
>> >
>> > Lacewing Digital Library: http://lacewing.tamu.edu/ Bibliography of
>> > the Neuropterida: http://lacewing.tamu.edu/Biblio/Main
>> > Neuropterida Species of the World:
>> > http://lacewing.tamu.edu/SpeciesCatalog/Main
>> >
>> >
>> > -----Original Message-----
>> > From: Taxacom <taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu> On Behalf Of
>> Robert
>> > Zuparko
>> > Sent: Thursday, February 28, 2019 4:15 PM
>> > To: taxacom <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
>> > Subject: [Taxacom] Some whimsical questions
>> >
>> > Having experienced my share of problems with name changes, I was
>> > wondering what were the worse case scenarios (or if you're an
>> > optimist, what are the record-holders). Specifically,
>> >
>> > 1) Which species has undergone the most name changes?
>> >
>> > 2) Which species has the most junior synonyms?
>> >
>> > 3) Which species has been variously placed in the greatest number of
>> different taxa (either family- or generic-level)?
>> >
>> > I assume the contenders are likely to have some of the following
>> characteristics - described in the 1800's (when communication between
>> researchers in different countries was problematic), widespread in the
>> Holarctic (where the greatest variety of researchers are likely to have
>> come
>> across them), at least somewhat charismatic (increasing the amount of
>> attention they might receive), and perhaps of economic importance (again
>> increasing the chances of people running into them), which suggests to me
>> that at least one of the species is likely to be among the Lepidoptera.
>> >
>> > Cheers,
>> > -Bob Zuparko
>> >
>> > Robert Zuparko
>> > Essig Museum of Entomology
>> > 1101 Valley Life Sciences Building, #4780 University of California
>> > Berkeley, CA 94720-3112
>> > (510) 643-0804
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>> > Nurturing nuance while assaulting ambiguity for 32 some years,
>> > 1987-2019.
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>> > Nurturing nuance while assaulting ambiguity for 32 some years,
>> > 1987-2019.
>> >
>> _______________________________________________
>> Taxacom Mailing List
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>> Nurturing nuance while assaulting ambiguity for 32 some years, 1987-2019.
>
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> Nurturing nuance while assaulting ambiguity for 32 some years, 1987-2019.
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