Heads up: Some or all of the identifications affected by this split may have been replaced with identifications of Cervus. This happens when we can't automatically assign an identification to one of the output taxa. Review identifications of Cervus elaphus 42206

Taxon split aaaaaa 48px Taxonomic Split 3993 (Committed on 2017-10-04)

Ludt et al., 2004 split Cervus elaphus into multiple species - which ones should be adopted? Should note that IUCN and Natureserve don't yet alknowledge this new species level taxonomy which (according to Wikipedia) "is in a state of flux."

Mitochondrial DNA phylogeography of r... (Citation)
loarie on 2013-02-01
split into

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Are there more species split off than just C. canadensis in Ludt's paper? I can get the whole text? Does it deal with C. nippon?

Posted by loarie over 6 years ago (Flag)
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I fully support this taxon change, however, I believe the vernacular name for Cervus canadensis should be "elk", not "wapiti", as the former has been adopted in North America (where most observations of the animal are from) since the colonial era. Wapiti is generally most used by Europeans to distinguish it from Alces alces, like you said. However, Alces alces is referred to as the "Eurasian Elk" on iNaturalist anyways. Maybe "Wapiti" should be designated as the dominant English vernacular name in Eurasia, while "Elk" can be set for North America.

Posted by bobby23 almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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@nutcracker it looks as if this split could have been a smooth one if the 2 output taxa would have been atlassed. Now we have > 1000 observations of an inactive taxon sitting around.... Also, subspecies of the "old" C. elaphus (www.inaturalist.org/taxa/42206-Cervus-elaphus) should have been swapped _before_ the split as many of these could have been assigned to one of the 2 output taxa.

In general, iNat's mammal taxonomy follows IUCN's Red List and doesn't track the primary literature: www.inaturalist.org/pages/curator+guide#policies

Given the huge number of affected observations, I think this shouldn't have been committed without further input by others. I only learned about this change now that it has been committed. Next time, please tag a bunch of other curators into the comments to make them aware _ahead_ of such a change.

Posted by jakob almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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Hope a lesson has been learned. Please be careful with taxonomic changes, especially where many observations will be affected like in this case . @loarie is probably busy with 1000+1 issues of iNat, and probably overlooked your comment amidst hundreds of others.

Looking into the curator guide would have also helped www.inaturalist.org/pages/curator+guide#changes

Posted by jakob almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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Sorry, too much a mess for me at the moment, busy with other things.

Posted by jakob almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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It should be noted that Cervus elephus and Cervus canadensis are treated as seperate taxon on the IUCN Red List (http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/55997072/0, http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/55997823/0), so this taxon change does reflect our primary species for mammals. However, I wasn't aware that subspecies were not carried over with this change. As jokob said, this is a problem with a species with so many observations, many of which with subspecific attributions not accounted for. Elk observations on my project (https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/north-american-megafauna) are now compromised, and I wouldn't be surprised if I wasn't the only one. It looks like there is a massive, invasive population of red deer in North America.

Posted by bobby23 almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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This is a split and not a swap, hence descendant taxa of the input taxon are not carried over. Please make yourself familiar how taxonomic changes work - the curator guide is very detailed in this respect, otherwise reach out to others.

My remark re IUCN Red List referred to the primary literature cited above.

Posted by jakob almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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ugh - giant mess. I'll get on this today.
nutcracker, in general splits with lots of observations need to be done with care. Mainly, the output taxa absolutely need to be atlased.
Lets take this opportunity for us mammal folks to get on top of mammal taxonomy. In the meantime, lets all not make any more mammal taxonomy changes until we've done so.

Sounds like folks aren't 100% happy with IUCN which is supposed to be our reference taxonomy. I'd suggest we either commit to using IUCN (in which case I can do some work to sync iNat's mammal taxonomy up to it) or we do something more akin to:
https://www.inaturalist.org/journal/loarie/11101-internal-reference-taxonomies-amphibian-pilot
where we have a more formal discussion about where and when to deviate from it

Posted by loarie almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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Well... the IUCN is generally a very reliable reference for mammals, but I have mixed feelings about adhering to it strictly, especially for subspecific taxa. However, I'm not sure that's the conversation to be had here.

Posted by bobby23 almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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My goal with mammals is to get where we are with Amphibians https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/20978-Amphibia and Turtles https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/39532-Testudines etc. where we can mark the taxonomy as 'complete' and track X of Y TOTAL SPECIES OBSERVED and track 'Discoveries' and 'Wanted' under the 'Trends' tab. But this requires being explicit about taxonomy. I'm personally fine with just strictly adopting IUCN mammal taxonomy. But my understanding is that @jakob (correct me if I'm wrong) isn't happy with their treatment of bats.

@jakob if we adopted the same approach as https://www.inaturalist.org/journal/loarie/11101-internal-reference-taxonomies-amphibian-pilot for mammals where we generally follow IUCN but explicitly mention some specific discrepancies for bats - would that work for you / everyone?

Posted by loarie almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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@loarie the American Society of Mammalogists has an online taxonomy in the making, which builds on MSW3, and should be pretty much up-to-date. Until this is published, I suggest to stick to the IUCN Red List, which is indeed ridiculously lagging behind current mammal taxonomy in many groups, including bats.

In the meanwhile, AfriBats is maintaining this specific taxon scheme
www.inaturalist.org/lists/57284-AfriBats-Check-List?q=&taxon=&observed=any&rank=leaves&taxonomic_status=all
www.inaturalist.org/taxon_changes?filters[taxon_scheme_id]=16
www.inaturalist.org/taxon_schemes/16

Posted by jakob almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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@nutcracker, I wasn't trying to be biased, I was trying to be practical. The inconsistent nomenclature for elk, moose, and wapiti is actually a problem brought about by the British, not Americans. However, this is not the place to argue about nomenclature, which is superficial at best. If you would like to discuss this further, I encourage you to private message me.

Posted by bobby23 almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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Hi folks - I started a mammal taxonomy thread here: https://www.inaturalist.org/journal/loarie/11949-mammal-taxonomy-help-wanted
first step is sorting out issues with the spreadsheet I linked to in that post. If you can help, many thanks.

I didn't get a chance to sort out this split mess today but will try to do that tonight

Posted by loarie almost 2 years ago (Flag)
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IUCN now recognizes Cervus hanglu as a separate species from C. elaphus and C. canadensis (so this probably should've been changed to a three-way split before committing). For now I've added it and swapped the two subspecies already on iNat into it (just to get them out of the inactive C. elaphus sensu lato); was this the best thing to do, or would it be better to swap C. hanglu and its subspecies back into C. canadensis?

Posted by maxkirsch almost 2 years ago (Flag)

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