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taxonomic horrors

Also, an article that is sure to strike fear into the heart of every
botanist - the imminent break up of Acacia.  And you thought the
_Coelophysis_ affair was politically loaded.......


Basically, the author is one of a number of taxonomists who is arguing that
rules of nomenclatural priority be suspended in the interest of taxonomic
stability.  It will be interesting to see what the result of the petition
will be.

Oh, and there was a bit about the gender of the names in the binomen that
confused me.  Near the end of the article, he states that, where a species
is moved from a genus with a masculine form to one with a feminine or
neutral form, the gender of the species name must change to suit;

"The name Racosperma has a neuter gender so if this name is adopted then the
endings of the names of most current species, subspecies and varieties will
have to change. For example. Acacia pycnantha would become Racosperma
pycnanthum, Acacia axillaris would become Racosperma axillare, and so on"

I had thought that the species name remains constant, irrespective of the
gender of the genus.  Or is this a case of differing rules between the ICZN
and the botanists?


Colin McHenry
Geology Building
University of Newcastle
Callaghan  NSW 2308

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