Evolving Thoughts

Evolution, culture, philosophy and chocolate! John Wilkins' continuing struggle to come to terms with impermanence... "Humanus sum, nihil humanum a me alienum puto" - Terence

Friday, May 05, 2006

Species concepts DO matter, 2

A University of Vermont botanist is visiting China to see whether 168 described species actually are. Using modern techniques, David Barrington is going to revisit the descriptions of the endemic flora of China to see if the morphologically based criteria actually dilineated rela species (where "real" equals "Mayrian definitions of species").

I truly hope he also recasts them in terms of some of the other species concepts out there - in particular Alan Templeton's Genetic Cluster concept and Hugh Paterson's Recognition Concept, neither of which rely on the negative "property" of being unabel to breed with other things.