A Crisis in Fish Systematics - open access pdf article

New cichlid species and taxonomy
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Bojan Dolenc
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A Crisis in Fish Systematics - open access pdf article

Postby Bojan Dolenc » Tue Jul 06, 2010 1:13 am

RANDALL D. MOOI & ANTHONY C. GILL (2010) - Phylogenies without Synapomorphies—A Crisis in Fish Systematics: Time to Show Some Character - Zootaxa 2450: 26–40 (10 May 2010) - Full article (PDF; 170KB) open access
Change in habit, producing change of function, is the main cause of the production of change in living structure. F. Wood Jones (1953) Trends of life

Heiko Bleher
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Re: A Crisis in Fish Systematics - open access pdf article

Postby Heiko Bleher » Sat Jul 24, 2010 9:34 am


thanks for posting this MS.

I can only congratulate the authors, because we are really in a crisis of taxonomy. And only because of so many are publishing only molecular results, often without ever havening even seen the specimens. I, being a managing editor of a scientific journal now for nearly 20 years (quarterly: aqua, International Journal of Ichthyology), have seen things in congresses and during ichthyological conferences, in publications (where I ask myself who, or does anyone at all, review these papers before they are printed...) and elsewhere, that I can only shake my head.
I could write here for days of things which are just not to believe, and not only in fishes, aslo in other animals and even plants. Some create whole new families and change the entire phylogeny of the animal or plants - entirely, and only based on molecular results (which often are dubius). Ane every single one poerson (or group) working only molecular, has a comolete different result, than the other group. Recently in Perth, Australia, I wittnessed 3 groups having a oral presentation on Cypriniformes and each one only did molecular reserach and each was completely differnt, nothing similar.

The question is really what is it all about. We in aqua do not accept any MS which is entirely based on molecular results, ONLy if molecular results are in addition made to the "normal" description as we know it for 2.5 centuries.

Thank you Bojan,

all the best
Heiko Bleher
Heiko Bleher

Paulo José Alves
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Location: Barreiro, Portugal

Re: A Crisis in Fish Systematics - open access pdf article

Postby Paulo José Alves » Mon Jul 26, 2010 5:07 am


More and more the new classifications are put in doubt, not only because serious hobbyists don´t agree with some of them but above all because other ichthyologists discredit them! The genetic analysis is not the holy grail, the great clarifyer that some thought it would be, it´s subject to considerations and opinions, it doesn´t give a definite black and white picture of the reality. The fish breeders become spectators of the constant changes in names and just try to keep up, knowing all the time that the Whatisitsnamensis variabilis will have a new name within 3 or 4 years, according to an investigator but not according to another one. All this just proves that there´s still a lot to know about the works of nature, starting by the concept of species, something that already in the eighteen century was taken as granted.

All The Best
Paulo José
All The Best
Paulo José

Gordon C. Snelling
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Joined: Sun Jan 28, 2007 7:57 am

Re: A Crisis in Fish Systematics - open access pdf article

Postby Gordon C. Snelling » Tue Jul 27, 2010 2:14 pm

It is a very sad state of affairs, I see this more and more in Entomology as well. Often times can't even get a paper past the review stage unless you add all sorts of DNA stuff to the paper.

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