behavior as an evolutionary/cladistic character

kuento at kuento at
Sun Mar 31 11:02:51 EST 1991

			Behavior as a Cladistic Character

I have been spending a good deal of time giving thought to the above
problem.  Exactly how useful is behavior in cladistics?  Ernst Mayr
has spent a good deal of time waxing positive about the utility of
behavior (as well as morphology, physiology, etc.) in the production
of phylogenies, so as a result I assume that behavior is/has been a
valid character for those who subscribe to evolutionary taxonomy.
Numerical pheneticists have dismissed it, relying exclusively upon
morphology, as have cladists.  But, in light of all of the (perpetual)
self-analysis occuring in theoretical cladistics, I think that
behavior has been given short shrift in cladistics.

Possible problems I've been able to come up with:
	1) How far should you atomize the character, or, what exactly
is the base node of a behavior?
	2) What is a character?  Should it be something that is
completely novel for that state or should we use context-dependent
	3) Since apomorphic characters are the base of cladistics, how
can we tell homologies from analogies?
Are there others that I haven't been able to think of?

Also if you want to suggest any good references concerning behavior in
cladistics, please do so.

Jim D-B

------(please include "JDB" in subj header of mail to this user)------
Jim Danoff-Burg     (Snow Museum, Univ. of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66045)
Bitnet: KUENTO at UKANVAX     "Myrmecophiles-R-Us"

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