genetic basis for species

Bob Parcelles,Jr. rjparcelles at
Tue Apr 2 13:05:59 EST 2002

--- Michael Gochfeld <gochfeld at EOHSI.RUTGERS.EDU> wrote:
> I agree with Niklas that we are not likely to get much information
> at the
> subspecific level from genetics for quite a while (probably most of
> our
> lifetimes).
> But it is also possible that subspecific differences are not
> genetic but
> reflect environmental and epigenetic factors that influence size,
> pigmentation,
> etc.
> Plants, of course, are particularly vulnerable to variation
> influenced by
> environmental conditions, resulting in recognition of ecotypes
> rather than
> subspecies. The polyphenism in butterflies is a good example of
> environmentally
> influenced variation, and the seasonal forms of some of our common
> butterflies
> vary much more than many subspecies, which creates a nightmarish
> situation in
> my mind.  This is spring, the time of the tiny Cabbage White.
> Mike Gochfeld


I think you have hit on some of the highest fascination for basic
research regarless of taxa. 
Thatis.. the dynamics of speciation and the influence of niche and
behavior in time.You have tyed in ecology also. When is a popualtaion
a subspecies and when is it just part of clinal diversification? We
need to reexamine a lot of previous subspecific work in this regard.
DNA can make the difference in conclusion rendering for sure. 

It is important to popularize buterflys with out any negative slant
to make it more easy to fund research and get lepidopterists who can
make their living doing this work. that is the sole argument going on
on this very redundant thread.

We need to chase the people who are limiting the pruse strings of
science out of their positions of power. There is a surplus of money.
they will niot spend it on starving people so spend it on sceince and
we will not need the in the future. And that is just the point. They
do not want science unless it is used for direct, profit-making

Barb made excellent points. It is obvious her button was pushed and
that is good.I was surprised to see one of our"laid back" northern
friends to be so tuned into what is going on and what needs to be
done. A few people on this list are lost in their Ivy towers,like a
lot of scientists, but a far larger group here covet these bastions
so much they are lost in a phoney charade. I reread every post last
night for the past two weeks and some people obviously were having
fun but others contradicted themselves not once but two or three
times.  Save your name calling I was into econmoic conservatism when
most of you were nursing (I,of course am always,polite). The
difference is I know society and politics has changed...some of you
better just stick to collecting bugs. 

The anti-conservation bias on this list is certainly in evidence. Ron
who two years ago appeared to be very anti everything but studying
minute detail of dead bugs has been a champion of many causes. this
one has very significant repercusions. we should all be helping not
poo-ppoing him.I think some of you just have been breathing too much
acetate (killing jar fumes for you non-killing watchers). Some of the
watchers might be sniffiing glue for all I know. This all started
from soneones dislike of Ron and sorry that had to happen, but if you
reread the threads some good was done. 

And anyway, spring has sprung. I have an intern who works for me and
he has been reading archives from this list and said it gets rather
boring when the bugs are flying. I would not go that far but it sure
can be exciting in the winter. See ya next winter when it is "smarten
up" time again.


Bob Parcelles, Jr
Pinellas Park, FL
RJP Associates, C2M-BWPTi
rjparcelles at
"Change your thoughts and you change your world."
- Norman Vincent Peale

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