Zoological names. A list of phyla, c…

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Zoological names. A list of phyla, classes, and orders, prepared for section F, American Association for the Advancement of Science


American zoological writers who have published books or scientific papers during the past decade show little uniformity in their reference to larger groups of animals. Of course no zoologist wishes to be limited in the choice of names which seem to be most appropriate; no one wishes to have imposed on him terms which he is ordered to use; and none desires to have nomeclature become fixed and inflexible. Of all the rewards that Science gives to her retainers those most prized and enjoyed are independence and the right to change old dogmas as soon as the discovery of new truths makes them illogical. Yet because the species of animals now number several hundreds of thousands, the sorting of species into groups must necessarily be continually more accurate and critical. Furthermore, there are men who through ignorance, inertia, or bigotry take little or no cognizance of the progress of current scientific evidence and opinion. For example, cer- tain writers of recent textbooks use such old terms as Annulata and Anura when the most thoughtful and competent students of annelids and amphibians agree that Annelida and Salientia are to be preferred. Dr. R. E. Snodgrass, who has recently studied the anatomy of onychophorans in detail, is convinced that these animals cannot be called arthropods because their muscular systems have quite different relations to nervous structures from those which obtain in arthropods. Dr. J. P. Moore does not believe that onychophorans may be included among amielids. There seems to be no alternative but to set off Onychophora as a group by itself. Those who know animals and their classifications in detail perhaps may enjoy using various names for the same group and delight in thus displaying their technical knowledge, but a novice who refers to two or three textbooks and finds the same group called by two or three names is greatly confused. In an attempt to bring about greater uniformity and more careful selection in the use of zoological group names the writer was authorized to form an intormal committee and to prepare a list of phyla, classes, and orders of animals which would represent current good usage. This action was taken by Section F of the American Association for the Advancement of Science at the Boston Meeting ; December, 1933. Since then many persons who appeared to be interested have been consulted. The following gave advice in connection with the groups mentioned : Invertebrata : A. H. Clark, B. G. Chitwood, Roy Miner, L. E. Noland, H. S. Pratt, Waldo Schmitt, H. J. Van Cleave. Protozoa : L. E. Noland, and forty-odd protozoologists to whom he sent a questionnaire. Porifera : //. V. Wilson, Coelenterata : Elizabeth Dekhmann (except Zoantharia). Aschelminthes : B. G. Chitwood, M. C. Hall. Platyhehranthes : E. W. Price; Cestoda : G. R. La Rue; Nemertea : W. R. Coe. Nemathelminthes : B. G. Chitwood, G. Steiner, Acanthoccphala : //. /. Van Cleave. Bryozoa : R. S. Sassier, R. C. Osburn. Echinodermata : A. H. Clark, H. L. Clark, E. Kirk. Brachiopoda : G. A. Cooper. Enteropneusta : W. E. Ritter. Annelida : J. P. Moore, A. L. Tread well. Arthropoda : H. E. Ewing, R. E. Snodgrass. Crustacea: E. A. Birge, Norma C. Furtos, H. A. Pilsbry, Mary J. Rathbun. Waldo Schmitt, J. P. Visscher, C. B. Wilson. Pycnogonidia : L. J. Cole; Arachiiida : //. £. Eiving. Insecta : C. L. Kennedy, Z. P. Mctcalj. J. G. Needham, H. G. Barber, H. E. Ewing. Mollusca : P. Bartsch, H. Rehder. Chordata : C. W. Gilmorc, \V. K. Gregory. Tunicata : IV. E. Ritter, W. G. Van Name. Pisces : W. K. Gregory, C. L. Hubbs, G. S. Myers. Amphibia : Helen T. Gaige, G. K. Noble. Reptilia : Helen T. Gaige, G. K. Noble. Aves : A. Wetmore. Mammalia : L. R. Dice, C. W. Gilmore, Remington Kellogg. Those whose names appear in italics furnished essentially the terms that appear in the following pages. While the writer gladly acknowledges the obligation to those persons and appreciates greatly the work they did, they are not to be held responsible for the published list. The differences of opinion among zoologists in the United States were found to be so great that there was little hope of agreement and the editor finally did what seemed to him best. Perhaps forty per cent of those consulted strongly urged the use of uniform endings for the larger groups of animals. The difficulty encountered in this connection was that protozoologists, helminthologists. conchologists, ornitholgists, etc. had already moved more or less in the direction of uniformity and each group of specialists had a tendency to adopt a different system. After long consideration the editor has used the system in vogue among protozoologists and students of some other groups, as it seemed to be at present more generally in use than any other. The endings are as follows : Phylum and Subphylum, — a; Class, — ea; Subclass, — ia ; Order, — ida ; Suborder, — ina. In presenting this report to Section F it is not supposed that uniform endings shall be adopted as official, or even recommended. The zoological world had perhaps best be left to make its own choice. In the list the names in the first column represent what the editor after con- sultation believes to be best current usage; those in the second column are what a few zoologists would like to see used, but perhaps in presenting these the editor is

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