noms vernaculaires/common names

lday at lday at
Tue Apr 21 21:19:46 EDT 1998

I have often wondered why the systematists do not come up with
more precise names for the larger groupings (higher than family) 
of those animals that have been reclassified to the point that
the original common names are not correct.  

e.g. we are now told that alligators really belong
in the same group as birds, while the rest of the reptiles belong
in a separate group.  Or I gather that 'moths' and 'butterflies' are
not systematically legitimate groups - rather, some of the moths 
belong with all of the butterflies in a group separate from
the rest of the moths.  Even if these examples are not quite accurate,
you get the concept.  So when do we get to have a vernacular - or any
other easily memorized - name for "alligators and birds" or any of the
other correct groupings?  The public is never going to understand
these changes without a name they can use.

Or are there already such names - and if so *what are they*?


Liz Day
LDAY at 
Indianapolis, Indiana, central USA - 40 N latitude, zone 5.

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