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Re: ICZN Details
In a message dated 10/8/99 10:58:24 PM EST, firstname.lastname@example.org writes:
<< I was scrolling through the DinoGenera listing and had a rather unusual
thought (big shock, huh ;^). I noticed that some genera have many junior
synonyms (JS). Now, I noticed that some of these JS are pretty cool names
for a dinosaur (Brontosaurus being a JS to Apatosaurus, for example). My
question: under ICZN rules, are these names off-limits for future species?
On one hand, I could see that since somebody assigned the name to a critter
in a professional paper, that particular name will always be associated with
that particular skeleton, even if that skeleton is later redefined to belong
within another, already existing, species.
OTOH, since the name is no longer in active use, it may be fair game to
assign it to a valid discovery. Which is correct? >>
Once a generic name is published as a scientific name, it cannot be used for
another organism in the same kingdom, even if it becomes a junior synonym of
another generic name. You can't name another dinosaur _Brontosaurus_ just
because the original _Brontosaurus_ is considered a junior synonym of
_Apatosaurus_. There is always (for example) the possibility that the
synonymy is wrong.