What is the difference between systematic taxonomy

The terms systematics, taxonomy and classification

The Basic unit every zoological system is that Species. Whereas in the past the species was based morphologically and typologically, namely on identical characteristics that distinguish it from other species, such a demarcation can no longer be maintained today. After all, geographically distant populations of the same species can differ greatly in their appearance. This is why the species is defined today as a community of descent and potential reproductive community that is so isolated from other species that either mating cannot occur or the corresponding hybrid species are unable to reproduce.

For the faunist, who has to rely mainly on externally visible characteristics, the morphology is still decisive for differentiating the species. The identification keys are also based predominantly on more or less easily recognizable and easily distinguishable morphological features.

Under classification one understands in the narrower sense the classification of animals in groups or rows on the basis of their relationships.

It is completely different from that ID (Determination), in which we classify individuals into groups (taxa) that have already been created using deductive (deductive) procedures.

The importance of taxonomy was already pointed out by Elton in 1947 in his book "Animal Ecology" as follows:

“The beginner in the field of ecology cannot be pointed out emphatically enough to what extent the progress of ecology depends on exact determinations and on the existence of solid systematic basic research. This is the crucial prerequisite for the whole; without it the ecologist is helpless, all his work can become pointless. "

Reading tip: Those who want to deal more intensively with the fields of work in taxonomy and systematics are recommended to read Ernst Mayr's book "Fundamentals of Zoological Systematics", which covers the theoretical and practical requirements for work in the systematic field in an excellent way. This work, published in 1975 by Verlag Paul Parey, is out of print, but it is temporarily available as an antiquarian.


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