|Publication Type:||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication:||2008|
|Authors:||Thompson, CF, Evenhuis, NL, Pape, T, Pont, AC|
|Journal:||Bulletin of Zoological Nomenclature|
|Type of Article:||Comment|
|Full Text|| |
We oppose the application to conserve the usage of Drosophila in the sense of melanogaster Meigen. This proposal seeks the endorsement by the Commission of a particular classification and classification paradigm, whereas the preamble of the Code asserts the freedom of taxonomic thought or action. While the stated purpose is the conservation of usage, the proposal in fact seeks to establish by that a new and as yet undefined concept of Drosophila. Today Drosophila is accepted as a large genus of flies, containing a number of species of importance to genetics. The most widely known species is Drosophila melanogaster Meigen. The proposal declares that the current concept of Drosophila is ‘paraphyletic’ and thus ‘violates modern systematic practice’. That practice is cladistics or Hennigian systematics. For followers of ‘evolutionary’ systematics, (Mayr, 1942; Simpson, 1944) or phenetics (Sneath & Sokal, 1973), paraphyletic taxa are acceptable. Then there are issues of the utility of large and small taxa (i.e. lumping vs splitting). We feel strongly that the Commission should not be endorsing one classification paradigm over another.
Mayr, E. 1942. Systematics and the origin of species. xiv, 334 pp. Columbia University Press, New York.
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Comments on the proposed conservation of usage of Drosophila Fallén, 1823 (Insecta, Diptera) 2 (Case 3407)