[Taxacom] the family Tortricidae or just Tortricidae

Soowon Cho chosoowon at gmail.com
Tue Oct 13 23:28:40 CDT 2020


Dear all,

Thank you for clarifying my questions on group names. Here are what I
understood from your comments and I hope I got it right.
- the Code states:
   names of the family-group are nouns in the plural
   names of the genus-group are in the singular
- Tortricidae: are [sometimes (or rarely?) 'is', depending on the context]
 *However, the following two are still arguable?:
   Tortricidae consist of leaf-roller moths.
   Tortricidae consists of leaf-roller moths.
- The family Tortricidae: is ['family' becomes the subject and is singular]
- The Tortricidae: is [considering 'family' omitted]
- Tortricids: are [general informal name]
- Tortrix: is [Tortrix is a genus name]

Sincerely,

On Wed, Oct 14, 2020 at 1:37 AM Frederick W. Schueler via Taxacom <
taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu> wrote:

> On 13-Oct.-20 11:43 a.m., Richard Jensen via Taxacom wrote:
>
> >  if referring to the family as a single
> > entity, then treat it as singular; when there is a stated or implied
> > reference to only some members of the family, or using the informal name
> > (e.g., rosids, tortricids), then treat it as a plural.
>
>
> * but the main point in this is that taxa are nested individuals - the
> higher taxon is a holophyletic individual as is each species of which
> it's composed (and the species is a monophyletic individual made up of
> individual organisms). Whether you use a plural or singular depends on
> whether you're referring to all or some of the subordinate taxa as a
> collective, or to the higher taxon as a single holophyletic individual.
> You get the same thing with other collective entities - you can say "the
> United States is..." or "the United States are..." depending on the
> context.
>
> fred.
> ===============================================
>
> > A number of my
> > botanical colleagues argued that, given the Latin origin and structure of
> > the name, it requires a plural verb, as in (using my favorite plant
> family)
> > "Fagaceae consist of trees and shrubs."  My view is that, because we are
> > not writing in Latin, but using English (I won't try to deal with other
> > languages), we should use English constructions, not follow Latin rules:
> > thus, "Fagaceae consists of trees and shrubs."
> >
> > This is done regularly in other English contexts.  We do not write "Los
> > Angeles are a city in California" or "Colorado Springs are a city
> > in Colorado".  In English, it is, in my experience, generally recommended
> > that collective nouns (such as Tortricidae or Fagaceae) take singular
> > verbs.  But, not everyone follows these recommendations.
> >
> > Cheers,
> >
> > Dick
> >
> >
> >
> > On Tue, Oct 13, 2020 at 11:07 AM Robert Zuparko via Taxacom <
> > taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu> wrote:
> >
> >> As to your point one: I can see three different explanations here:
> >>
> >> 1. It MAY be a matter of the perceived audience: if one is addressing
> >> (either in print or in person) an audience of lepidopterists, then
> >> "Tortricidae" is sufficient and adding the phrase "the family" does seem
> >> redundant to me. However, if one is addressing an audience of layfolk,
> who
> >> know little about nomenclature, emphasizing the taxonomic level could be
> >> useful.
> >>
> >> 2. Again, when focusing on taxonomic classification, adding "the family"
> >> helps add emphasis to a point one is trying to make
> >>
> >> 3. Some people are a bit on the, er, garrulous side.
> >>
> >> -Bob
> >>
> >> On Tue, Oct 13, 2020 at 5:04 AM Paul van Rijckevorsel via Taxacom <
> >> taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu> wrote:
> >>
> >>> I agree with Ken. All three options can be correct.
> >>> It depends on context and intent.
> >>>
> >>> Paul
> >>>
> >>> ----- Original Message -----
> >>> From: "Kenneth Kinman via Taxacom" <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
> >>> To: <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
> >>> Sent: Tuesday, October 13, 2020 8:59 AM
> >>> Subject: Re: [Taxacom] the family Tortricidae or just Tortricidae
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>>      1.  I don't think it is necessarily redundant, because -idae is
> not
> >>>> only the ending for animal family names, but it is also the ending for
> >>>> plant subclasses (such as Rosidae).
> >>>>      2.  As for being singular or plural, it depends on the context
> >>> within
> >>>> the sentence.  Tortricidae are tortricids, so it can be plural
> >>>> ("Tortricidae are moths").   But "Family Tortricidae" is a single
> group
> >>> as
> >>>> a taxon, especially when used as the subject of a sentence.  "Family
> >>>> Tortricidae is speciose".   If you don't explicitly refer to it as a
> >>>> family, you could say "Tortricidae are speciose" or "Tortricidae is
> >>>> speciose", depending the context (plural  tortricids or as a single
> >>>> taxon).   Likewise, you could say "Rosidae are speciose" (meaning
> >> rosids
> >>>> are speciose), but it would be "Rosidae is speciose" if you are
> >>> referring
> >>>> to the subclass (a singular taxon).   Perhaps it is best to make your
> >>>> meaning clear by saying "Rosids are a speciose group" or "Subclass
> >>> Rosidae
> >>>> is a speciose group".   Same for Tortricids and Family Tortricidae.
> >>>>                   ---------------Hope this helps,
> >>>>                                                        Ken
> >>>>
> >>>> ________________________________
> >>>> From: Taxacom <taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu> on behalf of
> Soowon
> >>> Cho
> >>>> via Taxacom <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
> >>>> Sent: Monday, October 12, 2020 8:47 PM
> >>>> To: taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
> >>>> Subject: [Taxacom] the family Tortricidae or just Tortricidae
> >>>>
> >>>> Dear members,
> >>>>
> >>>> As a non-native English speaker, I have two questions and really hope
> >> you
> >>>> could help me.
> >>>> 1. I feel curious about why people add "the family", "the subfamily",
> >>> "the
> >>>> genus", etc. in front of the scientific name in writing: for example,
> >>> "the
> >>>> family Tortricidae" instead of just "Tortricidae". Is there a pattern
> >> or
> >>>> rule in English? I thought it is redundant when we know Tortricidae
> >> with
> >>>> idae-ending means it is a family name.
> >>>> 2. Sometimes I see Tortricidae, Tortricinae, or genus name Tortrix is
> >>>> treated as a singular, but sometimes as a plural noun. I thought,
> based
> >>> on
> >>>> the ICZN, they are basically plural, but, in many cases, they are
> >>>> considered as a singular noun. Spell checker also treats them as a
> >>>> singular
> >>>> form. This may or may not be an English question, but I hope someone
> >>>> please
> >>>> let me know how to distinguish between the two.
> >>>>
> >>>> Sincerely,
> >>>>
> >>>> --
> >>>> Soowon Cho
> >>>> chosoowon at gmail.com
> >>>> Dept Plant Medicine
> >>>> Chungbuk Nat'l Univ
> >>>> Cheongju, 361-763
> >>>> KOREA
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> >> --
> >> Robert Zuparko
> >> Essig Museum of Entomology
> >> 1101 Valley Life Sciences Building, #4780
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> >>
> >>
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-- 
Soowon Cho
chosoowon at gmail.com
Dept Plant Medicine
Chungbuk Nat'l Univ
Cheongju, 361-763
KOREA


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