Questions tagged [taxonomy]

Questions on the classification of biological organisms, and the methods used for classifying them.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
2
votes
2answers
132 views

Is there really a clear distinction between dinosaurs and birds?

Traditionally, birds are classified as a class of dinosaurs and the term non-avian dinosaurs is introduced to refer to the rest. As recent discoveries suggest that some dinosaurs may have been warm-...
3
votes
1answer
3k views

Strain vs. Species

What is the convention between setting that this organism is a strain of a specific species and what are the considerations in saying that this organism is just a strain and not a separate species ...
0
votes
2answers
397 views

What Makes an Afrothere an Afrothere?

The mole-like golden moles. The hedgehog-like tenrecs. The shrew-like sengis. The rodent-like hyraxes. The anteater-like aardvarks. The whale-seal-hybrid-like sirens. The tapir-like ...
3
votes
0answers
117 views

Taxonomy and 'breeds' of animal species

How do taxonomists classify breeds of organisms in a species? When talking in such depths about organisms (using RNA and DNA), don't they have to unavoidably do it? I read in another question that ...
3
votes
1answer
56 views

How to automatically obtain the “kingdom” of a species from its name?

I'm looking for a simple way (such as a database) so that a program can get the kingdom of a species, knowing its name (such as "Prunus persica"). As a matter of fact the species I'm concerned with ...
0
votes
1answer
92 views

Can a species populated solely by males be saved from extinction?

How, if possible, can a species be saved from extinction if the only surviving population are males that cannot reproduce with each other?
1
vote
0answers
21 views

Is there a resource for comparing categories of life along quantifiable dimensions such as species diversity, geographic range, total mass, etc?

Ideally what I would like is some sort of interactive, sliceable tabular data along the lines of my examples below. The curious individual specifies the level of taxonomic rank, e.g. Kingdom or Class ...
3
votes
1answer
249 views

Why is traditional rank based taxomomy considered by some as logically inconsistent with phylogenetic knowledge?

Following is from wikpedia: Under the traditional nomenclature codes, such as the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature and the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and ...
2
votes
1answer
172 views

Do Osteichthyes fishes have any cartilage?

Higher vertebrates, such as mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians have both bone and cartilage. But do Osteichthyes fish (Bony fish) have any cartilage? Or do they only have bones? I've searched ...
9
votes
1answer
188 views

How do you call “pocoya” bird in English?

I am translating a Spanish book and I have here a bird named in Spanish "pocoya", about which I know the following: 1) it flies at night 2) it makes sounds that allow to confuse it with an injured ...
2
votes
0answers
918 views

Gorgonopsid--What's In a Name?

The Gorgon--a terrifying, monstrous female with hairs made of live snakes and a stare so horrifying that it would literally turn you to stone. The Gorgonopsid--a predatory protomammal that hunted ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

Taxonomy: Categorising Collembola [closed]

Observe: In some rows (Order, Family), the third column reveals a discerning physical characteristic or body type (...
1
vote
4answers
4k views

Can species be paraphyletic?

I thought that according to cladistics, only monophyletic groups were valid as species or any other taxa. But extinct species, like say H Erectus must be paraphyletic, as the common ancestor of H ...
4
votes
1answer
14k views

Can prawns be classified as fish, or is their position ambiguous?

Today a zoologist told me that prawns and fish are very similar, but zoologists/taxonomists have put them in different categories because their distinction is unclear (like hydrogen in the periodic ...
1
vote
0answers
219 views

Why is Hydra classified under Hydrozoa when it has neither a planula larva, nor a medusoid form?

If the general basis of classification of cnidarians is with respect to the body form - medusoid or polypoid, or in the incidence of metagenesis (as is common in hydrozoa), both, then, on what basis ...
1
vote
1answer
159 views

Time required to evolve advanced chromatophores in octopuses and squid?

Do we have any idea how long it took primitive Coleoida to evolve from non-color changing organisms to color changing organisms? Granted, not all coleoidans can change color (vampire squids are good ...
6
votes
2answers
3k views

Why are there “Old World” and “New World” families?

I've been reading on biological classification of the animal kingdom and have come across the New World and Old World terms a few times when they are applied to ranks (family, as much as I could find)....
3
votes
2answers
2k views

What are these two insects (or at least one of them)?

I need to catch and identify insects for my biology project, but I cant identify those two bugs. Can I get the genus and the species (or it can be just general name of what this type of bug is called?...
1
vote
1answer
38 views

Which magnoliophyta groups are NOT pollinated by bees and why? [closed]

Considering the bees as the family Apidae which families of flowering plants are definitely not pollinated by them and what could be the reasons? -Could you say that the relationship is preserved at ...
0
votes
1answer
79 views

How diverse are species in remote, isolated areas on Earth? [closed]

If we consider land areas that have been largely isolated from each other from a human point of view, but with a similar climate – for example, a part of Europe and a part of Americas with a similar ...
1
vote
0answers
43 views

What is the percentage of true bugs compared to all animal species on the plant?

Also, what is the percentage of True Bugs compared to the insect population? I’m writing a children’s book on bugs and I’m comparing the true bug to the insect. All population info seems to combine ...
18
votes
3answers
64k views

Why are turtles classified as reptiles and not amphibians?

I understand that turtles are reptiles because like all reptiles, they have scales on their body. But turtles (specifically sea turtles) live on both land and water, very much like amphibians. Also, ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Why are sponges sometimes not considered multicellular?

I read somewhere (I can't find where) that there is no scientific consensus whether sponges should be considered multicellular organisms. It seems I don't understand where is the line between ...
14
votes
4answers
1k views

Skull mystery on beach

The skull was found on a beach on the Sechelt inlet on Canada's pacific coast. A marine environment. What species is this skull from?
1
vote
0answers
79 views

What is the scientific name of Japan's (other) national flower, the chrysanthemum?

In my notes, I had Japan's royal chrysanthemum listed as Chrysanthemum japanense, but I just discovered that name has either been retired or it was never valid to begin with. (Or did I just misspell ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

If birds are dinosaurs, then are mammals reptiles?

I'm just curious - it seems generally accepted that birds are dinosaurs. If that's the case, then can we call all mammals reptiles? Can we go even further and call humans amphibians? And since single-...
6
votes
2answers
117 views

Why was the cackling goose split off as a distinct species from the Canada goose in 2004?

According to Wikipedia, in 2004 the American Ornithologists' Union made the cackling goose a new species, splitting it away from the Canada goose. The British followed suit in 2005. What was the ...
5
votes
1answer
367 views

Best methodology to compare computed phylogeny tree with taxonomy?

I have computed a phylogenetic tree using an alignement of sequences, and I would like to : Compare it to the "known" taxonomy (uniprot/ncbi which I know is not the most up to date one) and extract a ...
-2
votes
1answer
532 views

Am I a lobe-finned fish? [closed]

I really wish this question only contained the title and tags, but the website forces me to write some text.
3
votes
1answer
45 views

Anemiaceae etymology

What is the etymology of the name Anemiaceae for a family of ferns? I assume that it's from the name Anemia for one of its genera, but that is equally mysterious. Obviously it has no blood, but what ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Etymology of the term monilophyte

I would like to know the origin of the term Monilophyta. I know it's from Kenrick and Crane, but where did they get monilo-? It's not in my enormous Liddell and Scott Greek dictionary, nor is there ...
3
votes
1answer
76 views

Author statements (Readers) in biological nomenclature

I know that a binomial name may be followed by the name of the reader who has been the first to identify the species and to give it that binomial name. It is not completely clear to me what the same ...
1
vote
1answer
224 views

How are subspecies defined, in contrast to species? [duplicate]

When should a taxon be considered to be a subspecies of a certain species, and when as a different species? Are there some general guidelines how to assign a specific taxonomic status to a taxon?
5
votes
2answers
15k views

Binomial nomenclature: Why am I seeing different genera with the same species name?

I have looked online but still do not understand how two organisms can have the the same species names but be in different genera? Do all genera share common species names? Also which would be more ...
1
vote
1answer
91 views

Are platyhellmintes and annelids segmented?

Are the organisms of platyhelminthes unsegmented worms or segment? And what about those belonging to annelida? I guess Platyhelminthes are unsegmented and annelida are segmented but i am not sure ...
1
vote
0answers
466 views

Protostomia classification and characteristics

While working through a practice test for my final exam in an introductory organism biology course, I came across this question: Protostome characteristics include which of the following? a) a ...
1
vote
0answers
27 views

Machine-readable APG III trees?

Does anyone know where I can find a machine-readable version of the phylogenetic trees from APG III? I'm looking for something that contains the full tree structure, including unnamed branches. (i.e....
-2
votes
1answer
4k views

Was the dodo a dinosaur?

I've always believed that the dodo was a dinosaur, I don't know exactly why. I've done some searching on the internet, but except for toy stores selling "Dodo the Dinosaur's" I didn't find anything ...
5
votes
1answer
106 views

How do I read a species description that uses both ≡ (triple bar) and “incl.” to denote synonymy?

I'm trying to understand the relationship of plants formerly classified as Dorstenia crispa with distinct individuals continuously classified as Dorstenia foetida. I would assume that the distinctive ...
1
vote
0answers
17 views

Where should one start if they want to go about identifying phytoplankton and dinoflagellates?

I'm a first year university student and I really need help on how to identify and recognize the different organisms observed in my water samples. Are there any good references/tips on how to?
5
votes
1answer
2k views

How to correctly and accurately identify a few species of trees from their leaves?

I want to identify a tree from one of the 12 species listed based on observing their branch and leaves. Is there quick and neat way to do it? Red Oak, White Oak, Red Maple, Striped Maple, Tulip ...
4
votes
2answers
227 views

Why are bovines different genera if they can interbreed?

Why are bovinae a "subfamily", above Genus, when members can interbreed? Some like the beefalo are fertile, which is the normal defining characteristic of a species. And Genus are groups more ...
10
votes
1answer
3k views

What is a subspecies?

Within a species there may be subspecies that are named using trinomial nomenclautre. For example the Grizzly Bear, Ursus arctos horribilis is a subspecies of the Brown Bear Ursus arctos. The ...
2
votes
1answer
74 views

Clarification about taxon (plural taxa)

If i am right, then any category placed at any rank in the taxonomical hierarchy is a taxon. For example Panthera, Mammalia, Solanaceae etc. But are general group of organism (casual groups which are ...
3
votes
1answer
18k views

What is the difference between taxonomical aids Flora, Manual and Catalogue?

The three type of books mentioned above are taxonomical aids that offer information about species found in an area. However, the exact difference between them is not clear to me. Please explain.
4
votes
1answer
476 views

Identifying flying insect from northern Poland / Baltic Sea area

Found during this year vacations at Baltic Sea (northern parts of Poland): I don't have a picture containing other object, for size verification, but I'd say, that it was 3-4 cm long. There were two ...
1
vote
1answer
64 views

Why do we spend so much time on creating taxonomies? [closed]

I spent 3 years building a taxonomic database of plant specimens for the Missouri Botanical Gardens (http://www.tropicos.org/). Myself and two other programmers used a modern database and web pages to ...
2
votes
1answer
420 views

What is the difference between Ostracodermi and Placodermi

I looked the word origin and found Placodermi is PLATE SKINNED while Ostracodermi is Shell Skinned. Can someone please explain the difference between being Plate skinned and Shell skinned?
11
votes
3answers
1k views

Insect identification: white spotted beetle

3 pairs of legs, a pair of antenna, wings absent, compound eye, 4-6 centimeter approx. in size. I found this beetle at my door, in Pune, India.
4
votes
1answer
20k views

Difference between Category, Rank and Taxon

Is there any differences between the terms Category, Rank and Taxon or they all are same? I remember an explanation which goes on like this: Category and Rank are the same and are the categories of ...