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Re: tooth counts in systematics



Joshua Smith wrote:
> 

>         I don't think polymorphic traits need to be thrown out--the
> impetus behind this work was to begin accounting for variation in
> characters, not to just look for characters can be simply coded as
> bionomial states.  But as I work with teeth, I started here, and began
> with the stuff that was unambiguous and easy to code first.  A lack of
> rigorous testing of the characters before the analyses are run is the
> whole point as far as I am concerned.
> 


What kind of "testing" are you advocating?  I think every serious
systematist "tests" his or her characters, insofar as they look at every
available specimen for each ingroup taxon.  (Yes, I know - not EVERYONE
does.  Not all drivers wear seat belts, either.)




chris


-- 
----------------------
Christopher A. Brochu
Department of Geology
Field Museum of Natural History
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Chicago, IL 60605

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