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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
interactions.

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