History Main / TaxonomicTermConfusion

4th Jun '16 9:56:32 AM BrendanRizzo
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* Referring to hyenas as dogs. Despite having a resemblance to canines, hyenas are actually more closely related to mongoose and felines.

to:

* Referring to hyenas as dogs. Despite having a resemblance to canines, hyenas are actually more closely related to mongoose mongooses and felines.



----

to:

----
8th Jan '16 12:59:05 PM nombretomado
Is there an issue? Send a Message


** He also repeatedly refers to shrews as "rodents" in his ''{{Spellsinger}}'' series.

to:

** He also repeatedly refers to shrews as "rodents" in his ''{{Spellsinger}}'' ''Literature/{{Spellsinger}}'' series.
19th Oct '15 4:06:00 AM Spinosegnosaurus77
Is there an issue? Send a Message


Compound variations on these terms such as "subspecies" and "superfamily" are in common use. Some taxonomists also make use of the term "tribe" for a rank intermediate between subfamily and genus. This is not just limited to fiction; in a strictly factual sense birds are technically reptiles, and the whole animal, plant, fungus distinction is being [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three-domain_system rewritten]] of late so more often than not, it's hard to know the correct terminology because it always is changing. It doesn't help matters that the current system was invented before evolution was understood, and that the ranks are pretty arbitrary. One "genus" might be older and more diverse than another "family." Some scientists even want to [[http://www.ohio.edu/phylocode/index.html abolish taxonomic ranks]], though that's not likely to happen soon.

Another important distinction is whether a named group is monophyletic ('one tree') or not. A monophyletic group is exactly all descendants of some ancestor species. One way to think of phylogenetics and cladistics is they are the determination of which groups are monophyletic. All groups with a taxonomic rank (e.g. a genus) should be monophyletic[[note]]hence these groupings are constantly under revision as new evidence about monophyly is discovered[[/note]], but commonly used group names may not be - e.g. 'monkey' is not monophyletic unless you consider humans and other apes to also be monkeys. How to deal with this is debatable, and indeed debated in the examples on this very page. Some would argue that 'monkey' must include humans, others that 'monkeys' are not a legitimate group, others that 'monkey' is useful and legitimate, but you just need to be aware is it not monophyletic.

to:

Compound variations on these terms such as "subspecies" and "superfamily" are in common use. Some taxonomists also make use of the term "tribe" for a rank intermediate between subfamily and genus. This is not just limited to fiction; in a strictly factual sense birds are technically reptiles, and the whole animal, plant, fungus animal/plant/fungus distinction is being [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three-domain_system rewritten]] of late so more often than not, it's hard to know the correct terminology because it it's always is changing. It doesn't help matters that the current system was invented before evolution was understood, and that the ranks are pretty arbitrary. One "genus" might be older and more diverse than another "family." Some scientists even want to [[http://www.ohio.edu/phylocode/index.html abolish taxonomic ranks]], though that's not likely to happen soon.

ranks]].

Another important distinction is whether a named group is monophyletic ('one tree') or not. A monophyletic group is exactly all descendants of some ancestor species. One way to think of phylogenetics and cladistics is they are the determination of which groups are monophyletic. All groups with a taxonomic rank (e.g. a genus) should be monophyletic[[note]]hence these groupings are constantly under revision as new evidence about monophyly is discovered[[/note]], but commonly used group names may not be - e.g. 'monkey' is not monophyletic unless you consider humans and other apes to also be monkeys.monkeys, as Old World monkeys are more closely related to apes than New World monkeys are. How to deal with this is debatable, and indeed debated in the examples on this very page. Some would argue that 'monkey' must include humans, others that 'monkeys' are not a legitimate group, others that 'monkey' is useful and legitimate, but you just need to be aware is it not monophyletic.
18th Oct '15 9:26:27 AM Anddrix
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* ''Comicbook/XMen'' has many examples of ArtisticLicenceBiology, but two things are worth noting: The mutants are referred to as a new species, but they can breed with non-mutants; so no, the term mutant, or at least subspecies, is far more accurate. (Though the deciding factor would be if the ''offspring'' of mutants and non-mutants breed; else lions and tigers could be the same species. Incidentally, the offspring of a mutant and a baseline human ''can'' breed.) Subspecies as a term is fairly arbitrary and can be used for a lot of things (Kermode bears, which are black bears with white fur due to one different allele, have be referred to as a bear subspecies), so it could work. [[MST3KMantra Trying to apply real-world genetics to a world where there are genes that lets you alter reality or shoot lasers from your eyes is a bit of a lost cause.]] This is partially solved in later comics where SelfDemonstrating/{{Magneto}}, and several others, refer to Mutants as Homo sapiens superior (compared to Homo sapiens sapiens). Every human, nay, every individual of any species born is almost certainly a mutant, several times over, by the actual definition of the term. A typical human may have dozens of alleles (that is, genetic variations) not present in either of its parents. These are all mutations. So using the term "mutant" isn't all that scientifically useful, either.

to:

* ''Comicbook/XMen'' has many examples of ArtisticLicenceBiology, but two things are worth noting: The mutants are referred to as a new species, but they can breed with non-mutants; so no, the term mutant, or at least subspecies, is far more accurate. (Though the deciding factor would be if the ''offspring'' of mutants and non-mutants breed; else lions and tigers could be the same species. Incidentally, the offspring of a mutant and a baseline human ''can'' breed.) Subspecies as a term is fairly arbitrary and can be used for a lot of things (Kermode bears, which are black bears with white fur due to one different allele, have be referred to as a bear subspecies), so it could work. [[MST3KMantra Trying to apply real-world genetics to a world where there are genes that lets you alter reality or shoot lasers from your eyes is a bit of a lost cause.]] This is partially solved in later comics where SelfDemonstrating/{{Magneto}}, ComicBook/{{Magneto}}, and several others, refer to Mutants as Homo sapiens superior (compared to Homo sapiens sapiens). Every human, nay, every individual of any species born is almost certainly a mutant, several times over, by the actual definition of the term. A typical human may have dozens of alleles (that is, genetic variations) not present in either of its parents. These are all mutations. So using the term "mutant" isn't all that scientifically useful, either.
18th Oct '15 7:33:12 AM Menshevik
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* ''Comicbook/XMen'' has many examples of ArtisticLicenceBiology, but two things are worth noting: The mutants are referred to as a new species, but they can breed with non-mutants; so no, the term mutant, or at least subspecies, is far more accurate. (Though the deciding factor would be if the ''offspring'' of mutants and non-mutants breed; else lions and tigers could be the same species. Incidentally, the offspring of a mutant and a baseline human ''can'' breed.) Subspecies as a term is fairly arbitrary and can be used for a lot of things (Kermode bears, which are black bears with white fur due to one different allele, have be referred to as a bear subspecies), so it could work. [[MST3KMantra Trying to apply real-world genetics to a world where there are genes that lets you alter reality or shoot lasers from your eyes is a bit of a lost cause.]] This is partially solved in later comics where SelfDemonstrating/{{Magneto}}, and several others, refer to Mutants as Homo Sapiens Superior (compared to Homo Sapiens Sapiens). Every human, nay, every individual of any species born is almost certainly a mutant, several times over, by the actual definition of the term. A typical human may have dozens of alleles (that is, genetic variations) not present in either of its parents. These are all mutations. So using the term "mutant" isn't all that scientifically useful, either.

to:

* ''Comicbook/XMen'' has many examples of ArtisticLicenceBiology, but two things are worth noting: The mutants are referred to as a new species, but they can breed with non-mutants; so no, the term mutant, or at least subspecies, is far more accurate. (Though the deciding factor would be if the ''offspring'' of mutants and non-mutants breed; else lions and tigers could be the same species. Incidentally, the offspring of a mutant and a baseline human ''can'' breed.) Subspecies as a term is fairly arbitrary and can be used for a lot of things (Kermode bears, which are black bears with white fur due to one different allele, have be referred to as a bear subspecies), so it could work. [[MST3KMantra Trying to apply real-world genetics to a world where there are genes that lets you alter reality or shoot lasers from your eyes is a bit of a lost cause.]] This is partially solved in later comics where SelfDemonstrating/{{Magneto}}, and several others, refer to Mutants as Homo Sapiens Superior sapiens superior (compared to Homo Sapiens Sapiens).sapiens sapiens). Every human, nay, every individual of any species born is almost certainly a mutant, several times over, by the actual definition of the term. A typical human may have dozens of alleles (that is, genetic variations) not present in either of its parents. These are all mutations. So using the term "mutant" isn't all that scientifically useful, either.
18th Oct '15 7:15:52 AM Spinosegnosaurus77
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* ''The Book of College Pranks'': In relating a story about how a cow was elected Homecoming Queen because all the human entrants were disqualified, it says that the cow "was in the wrong phylum, but at least had not cheated." In fact, cows and humans are in the ''same'' phylum (Chordata), and the same class (Mammalia), and, inside mammals, they are remarkably quite close, even in distinct orders.

to:

* ''The Book of College Pranks'': In relating a story about how a cow was elected Homecoming Queen because all the human entrants were disqualified, it says that the cow "was in the wrong phylum, but at least had not cheated." In fact, cows and humans are in the ''same'' phylum (Chordata), (Chordata) and the same class (Mammalia), and, inside mammals, they are remarkably quite close, even in distinct orders.(Mammalia).
17th Oct '15 6:54:55 AM Spinosegnosaurus77
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* In ''The World Of Kong: A Natural History Of Skull Island'', ''Venatosaurus'' -- the raptor-style theropod dinosaur from ''Film/KingKong2005'' -- is described as a dromaeosaurid. But the species for which that taxonomic group is named, ''Dromaeosaurus'', was extremely obscure, only known from one damaged skull and a few foot bones, and assigned to a different family entirely, at the time Carl Denham's group first discovered Skull Island. It wasn't until the 1960s that Ostrom's work on ''Deinonychus'' elevated ''Dromaeosaurus'' to the {{Trope Namer|s}} for a RealLife family of dinosaurs. If a creature as spectacular as ''Venatosaurus'' had been discovered before ''Deinonychus'', then Ostrom would've surely compared his ''Deinonychus'' fossil to '''that''' species rather than to ''Dromaeosaurus'', and the raptor taxon would've been named ''venatosaurids'', not dromaeosaurids (at least initially).
29th Sep '15 5:16:07 AM Spinosegnosaurus77
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* Use of ''family'' when "phylum" ("the worm family"), ''class'' ("the insect family"), ''order'' ("the bat family"), ''genus'' ("the weasel family") or ''species'' ("the chicken family") would be more accurate.

to:

* Use of ''family'' when "phylum" ''phylum'' ("the worm family"), ''class'' ("the insect family"), ''order'' ("the bat family"), ''genus'' ("the weasel family") or ''species'' ("the chicken family") would be more accurate.
29th Sep '15 5:14:26 AM Spinosegnosaurus77
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* Use of ''family'' when ''class'' ("the insect family"), ''order'' ("the bat family"), ''genus'' ("the weasel family") or ''species'' ("the chicken family") would be more accurate.

to:

* Use of ''family'' when "phylum" ("the worm family"), ''class'' ("the insect family"), ''order'' ("the bat family"), ''genus'' ("the weasel family") or ''species'' ("the chicken family") would be more accurate.
10th Sep '15 3:39:56 AM Spinosegnosaurus77
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

** Adam Growe made a similar mistake on the Canadian edition of ''Series/CashCab''.
This list shows the last 10 events of 231. Show all.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.TaxonomicTermConfusion