Debunking Calilasseia, part I

Let's do it, shall we?

Anything that doesn't fit anywhere else below.

Moderators: Calilasseia, DarthHelmet86, Onyx8

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#801  Postby Darwinsbulldog » Aug 29, 2014 1:31 am

Sciwoman wrote:Still waiting on some debunking of the Blue Butterfly. :yawn:


All you needs to do to debunk Cali is to ask him about the biology, evolution, genetics etc, etc of butterflies. He will be out of bed in a heartbeat and give you an impromptu two hour erudite lecture [with copious citations, if required] on the Lepidoptera that would rival the efforts of a leading biologist in the field from an Ivy league university. :thumbup:

Evidence : [personal witnessing <levitate smile>.] :grin:
Jayjay4547 wrote:
"When an animal carries a “branch” around as a defensive weapon, that branch is under natural selection".
Darwinsbulldog
 
Posts: 7440
Age: 66

Print view this post

Ads by Google


Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#802  Postby hackenslash » Aug 29, 2014 1:36 am

Indeedy. Most illuminating is his exposé on the influence of Linnaeus' laddishness in the detail of taxonomic nomenclature...
User avatar
hackenslash
 
Name: The Other Sweary One
Posts: 21444
Age: 51
Male

Country: Republic of Mancunia
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#803  Postby Darwinsbulldog » Aug 29, 2014 1:50 am

hackenslash wrote:Indeedy. Most illuminating is his exposé on the influence of Linnaeus' laddishness in the detail of taxonomic nomenclature...


I still don't believe him on the moffs vs butters thingie. :dopey: :lol: :lol:
Jayjay4547 wrote:
"When an animal carries a “branch” around as a defensive weapon, that branch is under natural selection".
Darwinsbulldog
 
Posts: 7440
Age: 66

Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#804  Postby Calilasseia » Aug 29, 2014 1:56 am

Ah, the red petticoats and Catocala moths. Which has had an effect upon the taxonomy right through to the present, and indeed has also had an input into the common names chosen for American members of the Genus. Which corresponds directly to the choice of species names.

But the weirdest development in Lepidoptera taxonomy came with Fabricius, who seemed to think that turning his choice of taxa into cryptic crossword clues so convoluted, as to require a Calabi-Yau manifold to symbolise, was the way forward. Some of his choices of taxonomic designations are still puzzling some students in the field today. Courtesy of The Scientific Names of the British Lepidoptera: Their History and Meaning by A. Maitland Emmet, published by Harley Books (ISBN 0-946589-35-6). On page 52, we have the following entry (note that the numbers involved are the Bradley & Fletcher numbers assigned to the scientific names of UK Lepidoptera):

A Maitland Emmet wrote:ZYGAENINAE (166)

Zygaena Fabricius, 1775 - ζυγαινα (zugaina), the hammer-headed shark. Linnaeus divided Sphinx into four sections, listed under 370 Sesia q.v. Zygaena was Fabricius' name for the fourth section, a Family rather than a Genus, embrcing a large number of diversfied species (72 are listed by Fabricius (1793)). The first of these happened to be 169 filipendulae, and this accident may be the reason why, when the scope of Zygaena was reduced to that of a Genus, the name became associated with the Burnets. It has puzzled authors and emendations have been proposed. MacLeod was in part right when he derived it from ζυγον (zugon, yoke, but was wrong when he continued 'perhaps from appearance of antennae with thick bent-over ends', because Fabricius did not erect the name to describe the Burnets. He wanted a Greek word collateral with Sphinx and perhaps as enigmatic, which hinted at the idea of adscitus or linkage and punningly chose Zygaena; it has no application to the Genus as now constituted.


Back on page 13, Emmet has this to say:

A Maitland Emmet wrote:A book for the curious

When a specimen of 1273/1286 Dichrorampha sedatana Busck emerged recently, I was pleased to have reared a specimen of a moth I had hitherto only encountered as an adult, but even more so to know that I had before me the 'staid' member of the 'two-coloured bill-hook' Genus. A scientist is expected to treat his subject with detachment and objectivity, but the bestowal of names is an aspect of his work in which he can indulge his fantasy and introduce poetic licence or anthropomorphism without reproof. Guenée must have enjoyed the creative activity he exercised in devising a Generic name that was imaginative and mysterious, yet at the same time scientifically informative. Busck lacked the Gallic panache, but proffered a sensible, workaday specific name.

Scientific names have much in common with crossword puzzles. The nomenclator is the setter; he searches for a name that is neat and appropriate, and if he can mystify his fellow entomologists, he will derive sadistic pleasure in so doing. His successors are the solvers, seeking the answer to the riddle he has set. Some clues are cryptic, others matter-of-fact; some poetic, others pedestrian. There is no need to seek the explanations of scientific names, just as there is no need to do crossword puzzles. There are, however, many who derive pleasure from both pursuits. This book is written for the reader who is curious about the names themselves, the reasons why they were given and, in the case of the older supraspecific names, the history of their application.


It is apposite to note that Emmet, whilst acknowledging a debt to one R. D. MacLeod, the author of an earlier work, noted that the latter's lack of specialist entomological knowledge led him to accept uncritically some interesting suggestions from various staff at the Natural History Museum, some of whom may have been as equally at a loss as MacLeod himself with respect to the origin of some of the names in question, As a consequence, not only has Emmet found, through something like 40 years of diligent research, that approximately fifteen percent of MacLeod's explanations are fundamentally wrong, but that some of them are fanciful products of the imagination, and in extreme instances, outright fabrications.

Whilst modern authors are required, in peer reviewed work, to present an etymology for new taxa, no such requirement existed in the day of Linnaeus, in part because his binomial system arose naturally from an established process, already at least a century old, of providing a full and complete description, in Latin, of the organism in question. Consequently, the names could in many instances be readily connected to the remainder of the text when this practice enjoyed universal currency. The trouble started when authors began writing the descriptions of organisms in their native languages, departing from the Latin tradition. An insistence upon an etymological explanation for taxa, in order to remove ambiguities, lagged behind this departure from tradition. Cconsequently, entomologists in particular, faced with the daunting task of naming hundreds of thousands of species, were foremost not only in seeking inventive ways of stretching the vocabulary of Latin and Classical Greek for the purpose, but in the pursuit of taxonomy as the scientific version of cryptic crossword compilation. Fabricius, being a direct pupil of Linnaeus, was not only the first serious sadist in the field, but one of the most thoroughly educated, hence some of his names requiring particular attention to detail.

So now you know. :)
Signature temporarily on hold until I can find a reliable image host ...
User avatar
Calilasseia
RS Donator
 
Posts: 22091
Age: 59
Male

Country: England
United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#805  Postby Calilasseia » Aug 29, 2014 2:55 am

Darwinsbulldog wrote:
hackenslash wrote:Indeedy. Most illuminating is his exposé on the influence of Linnaeus' laddishness in the detail of taxonomic nomenclature...


I still don't believe him on the moffs vs butters thingie. :dopey: :lol: :lol:


I have the evidence, old chap. :)

Just for the fun of it, 'll run once more through the reasons why the distinction is purely artificial, has no real scientific validity, and indeed runs into several anatomical and taxonomic issues. Let's take the proposed distinctions one by one, and see that [1] they are frequently replete with exceptions, and [2] result in paradox and contradiction in some instances.

We will start with:


Distinction 1: Butterflies fly by day, moths fly by night.

Already, the UK fauna alone has a large collection of exceptions to this rule, in the form of day flying moths. Examples include the Blood-Vein, Timandra comae, the Shaded Broad-bar, Scotopteryx chenopodiata, the Latticed Heath, Chiasmia clathrata, the Cinnabar Moth, Tyria jacobaeae, and most of the Burnet Moths (Family Zygaenidae). The rest of the world doubtless has its own exceptions to contribute here, to the rendering of this distinction as null and void. Plus, one of the insects regarded as a "butterfly", the Brazilian Dynastor napoleon, is a night flying species.


Distinction 2: Butterflies are brightly coloured, moths are dull brown.

A "distinction" that doesn't really exist. Many moths in the UK fauna alone are brightly coloured, and I've recently posted some photos of species that fall into this category in the wildlife thread, such as the Brimstone Moth, Opisthograptis luteolata, which is bright yellow, along with the Swallowtailed Moth, Ourapteryx sambicaria. Then there are no less than six bright green Geometrids in the UK fauna, known colloquially as "Emeralds", and then there's the Scarce Silver-Lines, Bena bicolorana[/i], which looks as if it's been fashioned out of slivers of jade. We can also throw into the mix at this point the Cinnabar Moth, Tyria jacobaeae, and several of the Burnets, which have bright aposematic colours. Conversely, the Family Hesperiidae, which contains the Skippers, all of which are referred to as butterflies, is littered with dull brown species, many requiring genital dissection to identify them to species level. The Hesperiidae will appear time and again as an oddity within the Lepidoptera, notably not only being placed in their own Family, but their own separate Superfamily to boot. However, this Family does contain a good number of colourful tropical species - the Genus Pyrrhopyge from the Amazon contains numerous examples, alongside the iridescent blue Phareas coeleste - view this beauty here.


Distinction 3: Butterflies rest with their wings folded vertically, moths rest with their wings flat and horizontal.

Again, even the UK fauna has exceptions. The Hesperiidae is again an exception - a clade of butterflies whose members rest with wings in various odd orientations, the wing edges frequently forming an X shape when seen head on. Even supposedly non-exceptional butterflies, such as the Peacock and the Speckled Wood here in the UK, will frequently rest with their wings open. Likewise, in the Geometridae, a Family usually regarded here in the UK as moths, the various Thorn species will rest with their wings folded vertically, as will several other Geometrids such as the Latticed Heath, Chiasmia clathrata. Indeed, in the wildlife thread, I've recently posted some nice photos of the Canary-Shouldered Thorn, Ennomos alniaria, resting with wings vertically folded.


Distinction 4: Butterflies have clubbed antennae, moths have a range of distinct antennal morphologies.

Again, the Hesperiidae (those Skippers again!) are an exception, with antennae that are thickened, but end in a point, and which resemble most closely from a morphological standpoint, the antennae of the Burnet Moths (Family Zygaenidae), which superficially resemble butterfly antennae from a distance, until subjected to closer examination. The Burnet Moths also fall into two other exceptional categories, being brightly coloured with aposematic colouration (they're protected from predation by cyanogenic glycosides sequestered from larval foodplants), and day-flying. In this case, the distinction actually resulted in the erection of high-level taxa, the Rhopalocera (club horns) and the Heterocera (other horns), but these taxa are not considered to form an essential part of the modern classification scheme, because whilst the Rhopalocera is a monophyletic assemblage, the Heterocera (excluding the Rhopalocera) is by definition paraphyletic.

Even within those taxa collectively referred to as "butterflies", there is some variation in antennal morphology even when the Hesperiidae are ignored. This graphic is illustrative thereof (though a Hesperiid is included therein):

Image

The Genera in question listed above belong to the following clades (all bona fide butterflies):

a) Danaus (Family Nymphalidae, Subfamily Danainae)
b) Orsotriaena (Family Nymphalidae, Subfamily Satyrinae)
c) Hypolimnas (Family Nymphalidae, Subfamily Nymphalinae)
d) Pareba (Now considered a junior synonym of Acraea) (Family Nymphalidae, Subfamily Heliconinae)
e) Libythea (Family Nymphalidae, Subfamily Libytheinae)
f) Abisara (Family Riodinidae)
g) Papilio (Family Papilionidae)
h) Pieris (Family Pieridae)
j) Lampides (Family Lycaenidae)
k) Tagiades (Family Hesperiidae, Subfamily Pyrginae)


Distinction 5: Moths possess a frenulum, butterflies do not.

This distinction begins with a problem, in the form that only certain well-defined clades of moth possess a frenulum. For those unfamiliar with this, a frenulum is a wing-coupling structure, consisting of a thin rod-shaped projection from the thorax, coincident with the root of the hindwing, which engages with a small hook on the forewing. This is only present in some moth Families (e.g., Zygaenidae): some of the more primitive moths use a different structure called a jugum, a lobe on the forewing that meshes with the hindwing. However, no butterfly had ever been found with such a structure. At this point, some of you are anticipating me pointing to those Skippers again, and you'd be right :mrgreen:

Say hello to the Regent Skipper, Euschemon rafflesia, a Skipper from Australia:

Image

This species is unusual, in that it possesess a frenulum. It's the only butterfly to possess one. But, in one of those twists that biology has a habit of unleashing upon the unwary, the species is sexually dimorphic - only the male possesses a frenulum.

Just to throw some more spanners in the attempt to make the distinction tidy, there is an entire Family of Lepidoptera, the Hedylidae, which were originally treated as somewhat aberrant Geometrids, until more closely examined, and found to warrant their own Family (and for that matter, their own Superfamily, the Hedyloidea). These too possess a frenulum, but are otherwise suggestive of being a sister taxon to the Papilionoidea, the Superfamily containing most of the butterflies, though they conmprise an interesting collection of insects, with some puzzling anatomical features.

And with that, I'll take a break for some oat crunch biscuits. :)
Signature temporarily on hold until I can find a reliable image host ...
User avatar
Calilasseia
RS Donator
 
Posts: 22091
Age: 59
Male

Country: England
United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#806  Postby DarthHelmet86 » Aug 29, 2014 5:40 am

I shall now call them all Motherflies.
I. This is Not a Game
II. Here and Now, You are Alive
User avatar
DarthHelmet86
RS Donator
 
Posts: 10344
Age: 35
Male

Country: Australia
Australia (au)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#807  Postby Spinozasgalt » Aug 29, 2014 6:05 am

Why is it only the theists that are trying to debunk here? Cali, say something with which some of us atheists will disagree. Hack, for example. Then we'll all attack you.

Okay...GO!
When the straight and narrow gets a little too straight, roll up the joint.
Or don't. Just follow your arrow wherever it points.

Kacey Musgraves
User avatar
Spinozasgalt
RS Donator
 
Name: Jennifer
Posts: 18770
Age: 34
Male

Country: Australia
Australia (au)
Print view this post

Ads by Google


Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#808  Postby Arnold Layne » Aug 29, 2014 8:54 am

But Cali. You are only talking about observations of moths and butterflies. The moth-in-itself and the butterfly-in-itelf are not the same thing as the observation! How many times do you need to be told! :nono:
I'm a Pixiist
User avatar
Arnold Layne
 
Posts: 2711

Country: France
France (fr)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#809  Postby Darwinsbulldog » Aug 30, 2014 12:43 am

Arnold Layne wrote:But Cali. You are only talking about observations of moths and butterflies. The moth-in-itself and the butterfly-in-itelf are not the same thing as the observation! How many times do you need to be told! :nono:

The real immaterial distinction is that butterflies have souls, and moths do not. They are simply a better class of person. Of course the trickster Old Nick, made some butterflies that should be moths and vice-versa. :lol: :lol:
Jayjay4547 wrote:
"When an animal carries a “branch” around as a defensive weapon, that branch is under natural selection".
Darwinsbulldog
 
Posts: 7440
Age: 66

Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#810  Postby Spinozasgalt » Aug 30, 2014 9:38 am

Can we have just one joke on this forum that doesn't become a rallying call and subsequently find itself run so deeply into the ground that it reaches China? Just one?
When the straight and narrow gets a little too straight, roll up the joint.
Or don't. Just follow your arrow wherever it points.

Kacey Musgraves
User avatar
Spinozasgalt
RS Donator
 
Name: Jennifer
Posts: 18770
Age: 34
Male

Country: Australia
Australia (au)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#811  Postby Nicko » Aug 30, 2014 10:54 am

Darwinsbulldog wrote:Of course the trickster Old Nick, made some butterflies that should be moths and vice-versa. :lol: :lol:


I never touched them!

:snooty:
"Democracy is asset insurance for the rich. Stop skimping on the payments."

-- Mark Blyth
User avatar
Nicko
 
Name: Nick Williams
Posts: 8641
Age: 44
Male

Country: Australia
Australia (au)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#812  Postby BlackBart » Aug 30, 2014 11:07 am

A butterfly is just moth with delusions of grandeur...

or was it a moth is a butterfly with self-esteem issues. :ask:
You don't crucify people! Not on Good Friday! - Harold Shand
User avatar
BlackBart
 
Name: rotten bart
Posts: 12245
Age: 58
Male

United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#813  Postby Varangian » Aug 30, 2014 11:16 am

DarthHelmet86 wrote:I shall now call them all Motherflies.

Sounds better than Butths.
Image

"Bunch together a group of people deliberately chosen for strong religious feelings,
and you have a practical guarantee of dark morbidities." - H.P. Lovecraft
User avatar
Varangian
RS Donator
 
Name: Björn
Posts: 7298
Age: 56
Male

Country: Sweden
Sweden (se)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#814  Postby Arnold Layne » Aug 30, 2014 11:59 am

Spinozasgalt wrote:Can we have just one joke on this forum that doesn't become a rallying call and subsequently find itself run so deeply into the ground that it reaches China? Just one?

:lol:
I'm a Pixiist
User avatar
Arnold Layne
 
Posts: 2711

Country: France
France (fr)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#815  Postby The_Piper » Aug 30, 2014 12:07 pm

The moth vs butterfly was useful way back when, but one of my favorite Cali dissertations was on fly weeners. I wish I could dig it up easily, it's somewhere on the wildlife thread, link in my signature.
"There are two ways to view the stars; as they really are, and as we might wish them to be." - Carl Sagan
"If an argument lasts more than five minutes, both parties are wrong" unknown
Self Taken Pictures of Wildlife
User avatar
The_Piper
 
Name: Fletch F. Fletch
Posts: 28572
Age: 46
Male

Country: Chainsaw Country
United States (us)
Print view this post

Ads by Google


Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#816  Postby Spinozasgalt » Aug 30, 2014 12:11 pm

Sure, it's all bugs and moths and flying things. But does anyone care about paradigmatic natural law theories and metaethical moral relativism? No. No one even considers them.
When the straight and narrow gets a little too straight, roll up the joint.
Or don't. Just follow your arrow wherever it points.

Kacey Musgraves
User avatar
Spinozasgalt
RS Donator
 
Name: Jennifer
Posts: 18770
Age: 34
Male

Country: Australia
Australia (au)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#817  Postby tolman » Aug 30, 2014 12:21 pm

Admit it. You're just making those words up to try and look cleverer than us.
I don't do sarcasm smileys, but someone as bright as you has probably figured that out already.
tolman
 
Posts: 7106

Country: UK
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#818  Postby The_Piper » Aug 30, 2014 12:44 pm

I don't know anything about paradigmatic natural theories, but did you ever hear of traumatic insemination? It's as crazy as it sounds. :dance:
"There are two ways to view the stars; as they really are, and as we might wish them to be." - Carl Sagan
"If an argument lasts more than five minutes, both parties are wrong" unknown
Self Taken Pictures of Wildlife
User avatar
The_Piper
 
Name: Fletch F. Fletch
Posts: 28572
Age: 46
Male

Country: Chainsaw Country
United States (us)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#819  Postby Arnold Layne » Aug 30, 2014 12:51 pm

Spinozasgalt wrote:Sure, it's all bugs and moths and flying things. But does anyone care about paradigmatic natural law theories and metaethical moral relativism? No. No one even considers them.

True that! :nono:
I'm a Pixiist
User avatar
Arnold Layne
 
Posts: 2711

Country: France
France (fr)
Print view this post

Re: Debunking Calilasseia, part I

#820  Postby Calilasseia » Aug 30, 2014 2:38 pm

The_Piper wrote:The moth vs butterfly was useful way back when, but one of my favorite Cali dissertations was on fly weeners. I wish I could dig it up easily, it's somewhere on the wildlife thread, link in my signature.


Are you sure it wasn't this post on detachable spider penises you're thinking of? :)

Or perhaps this dissertation on "lock and key" versus sexual selection imposed diversity, as the underpinnings of insect genital morphology?
Signature temporarily on hold until I can find a reliable image host ...
User avatar
Calilasseia
RS Donator
 
Posts: 22091
Age: 59
Male

Country: England
United Kingdom (uk)
Print view this post

PreviousNext

Return to General Debunking

Who is online

Users viewing this topic: No registered users and 1 guest