[LEPS-L:8034] Re: Extinct 'species'

Doug Yanega dyanega at pop.ucr.edu
Wed Nov 29 11:15:01 EST 2000

> I note with
> interest that the website does not show ANY extinct species for Canada
> and USA (continental part).

Just because no one has bothered to publish it, does not mean it has not
happened. The fly Rhaphiomidas t. terminatus is extinct (thanks to Los
Angeles), and SHOULD appear on any such list, since it's well-known. When I
wrote my Cerambycid field guide, I noted two species from the Eastern US
(one from Indiana, one from Pennsylvania) that have not been seen since the
holotype was collected, and I listed them both as presumed extinct. There
are also about 40 native bee species known only from the Palm Springs area
that have not been seen since the types were collected, but this area is a
bit less well-known than Indiana or Pennsylvania, and there are no hobbyist
bee collectors, as there are Cerambycid collectors - so the lack of new
records is not necessarily convincing evidence of extinction. PROVING that
anything, even a large vertebrate, is extinct is (as those in Tasmania can
attest) nearly impossible.


Doug Yanega        Dept. of Entomology         Entomology Research Museum
Univ. of California - Riverside, Riverside, CA 92521
phone: (909) 787-4315 (standard disclaimer: opinions are mine, not UCR's)
  "There are some enterprises in which a careful disorderliness
        is the true method" - Herman Melville, Moby Dick, Chap. 82


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