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B6A2SystematicsF10 - Biological Classification Whats in a...

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Biological Classification Heyer 1 What’s in a name? “Bears” North America Australia Biological Classification Biological Classification Taxonomy : naming & classifying organisms Systematics : studying relationships among taxonomic groups Systems of Systematics I. Anthrocentric II. Ecological III. Hierarchical IV. Phylogenetic I. Anthrocentric Systems “human-centered” — Classified based on their relevance or usefulness to humans – Edible / inedible / medicinal – Wild vs. domestic – Crops vs. weeds Still basis for political policies – “Biological resources” – Commercially harvested vs. recreationally harvested vs. non-targeted (trash, by-catch) species I. Anthrocentric Systems Aristotle, 384–322 BCE Scalae Naturae (“ladder of nature”) “advanced” = more human-like “primitive” = less human-like * Archaic, prejudicial expressions: Any organism successfully surviving is not “primitive”! * Better terms: “generalized” vs. “specialized” or “derived” II. Ecological Systems Classified based on their habitat, niche or behavior – “Plant” (plant ed in place / sessile) vs. “Animal” (anima ted / motile) – “beasts of the field” / “beasts of the air” / “beasts of the sea” (fish) Useful for studying ecological relationships and effects of environment on body forms – Vegetation types: herb / shrub / tree – Aquatic life: plankton / nekton / benthos – Assemblages of organisms in a specific community • Oak woodland biota; coral reef biota; etc.
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Biological Classification Heyer 2 III. Hierarchical Systems • Classified based on their relative similarities of body form Carolus Linnaeus (Carl von Linné), 1707–1778 “Father of modern taxonomy & systematics” Carolus Linnaeus (Carl von Linné), 1707–1778 “Father of modern taxonomy & systematics” • Swedish botanist, zoologist, physician, linguist, poet, & educator. Degree in Medicine; professor of medicine & botany - Uppsala University. • Also one of the fathers of modern ecology. One of the most influential intellectuals of the 18th century. • Students from all over Europe (esp. England) came to study under him. Then went out to join numerous exploratory expeditions around the world (e.g., with James Cook) and join faculties of major universities. • Linnaeus also corresponded with collectors and naturalists around the world who sent him exotic specimens. Carl von Linné, 1775 III. Hierarchical Systems • Classified based on their relative similarities of body form Carolus Linnaeus (Carl von Linné), 1707–1778 “Father of modern taxonomy & systematics” i. Recognize “patterns in creation” • Develop a standard hierarchy of similarities ii. “…finish the work of Adam.” • Identify, name, and categorize all forms of life on earth.
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