Mammal taxonomy without taxonomists : a reply to Zachos and Lovari

Gippoliti, Spartaco ; Cotterill, Fenton P. D. ; Groves, Colin P. (2013)

CITATION: Gippoliti, S., Cotterill, F. P. D. & Groves, C. P. 2013. Mammal taxonomy without taxonomists : a reply to Zachos and Lovari. Hystrix, the Italian Journal of Mammalogy, 24(2):145–147, doi:10.4404/hystrix-24.1-8881.

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Ontological and epistemological properties of the Phylogenetic Species Concept (PSC) as applied in recent mammalian taxonomic works are redefined and defended against criticisms raised by Zachos and Lovari (2013), which we find inapplicable to taxonomy because they relate more to the field of population biology. We summarize the negative impacts of the polytypic species concept for conservation and evolutionary biology, with emphasis on Rhinocerotidae. The priority need to embrace and strengthen museum-based taxonomic research is emphasized.

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