Nereis - nomenclature

Geoff Read at
Mon Feb 9 01:48:44 EST 1998

Erik Kristensen wrote:

> ... However, I am a
> little frustrated about the increasing number of papers using new genus
> names for nereids, e.g. Hediste diversicolor instead of Nereis
> diversicolor and Neanthes virens instead of Nereis virens.

Hardly new - Hediste is 1867, Neanthes is 1866.  They are ancient and
venerable, if rather flimsily defined. Neanthes has probably been in
continuous use since, and Hediste has undergone a revival over some years
now.   Biologists can use them  at the level they wish without fear of
censure either way. It's not important.

But please, when you really want to say "We prefer Hediste here, others may
call it Nereis diversicolor," DO NOT  make Nereis apparently a subgenus of
Hediste as in the bizarre formation 'Hediste (Nereis) diversicolor'
(examplars: the 4th Conference vol. abstracts p.623,  p631, p638).

  Geoff Read < at>

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