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common names (was Re: lay person)

At 03:42 AM 9/1/97 -0400, you wrote:
>I am aware of very few animals who have no common names.  could you  list a
>few for me (let's not use the obvious ones such as the tyrannosaurus or the
>boa).  I'd be willing to bet that most animals are called by common names,
>and these do differ in locations, that's why we have the scientific names, to
>keep it all straight.

Try almost any individual species of brachiopod, nemetode, rotiferan,
non-malacostracan crustacean, non-anthozoan cnidarian, mite, tropical
beetle, hemichordate, ctenophore, etc. ad nauseum.  These vastly outnumber
those animal species with common names.

Animals with common names tend to be: tetrapods, fish of the photic zone,
commerically valuable marine invertebrates, temperate and conspicuous
tropical insects, and other macroscopic animals with which we have obvious

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Vertebrate Paleontologist     Webpage: http://www.geol.umd.edu
Dept. of Geology              Email:th81@umail.umd.edu
University of Maryland        Phone:301-405-4084
College Park, MD  20742       Fax:  301-314-9661