Intelligent Design speciation

A common species of beetle turns out to be two species

Spread the love
two species, not one/David Bilton, U Plymouth

Using “cutting edge DNA technology.” From ScienceDaily:

Meladema coriacea is among Europe’s largest water beetles and has been considered common across the south of the continent and in North Africa since the early 19th century.

But academics from the University of Plymouth and the Institute of Evolutionary Biology in Barcelona have now shown what was long thought to be one common species is actually two.

Using DNA sequence data and detailed analysis of morphology, they have described a new species — Meladema lepidoptera — which appears virtually identical to Meladema coriacea at first glance, but is very divergent genetically.

Meladema lepidoptera is restricted to Corsica, Sardinia, adjacent small islands and some areas of the Italian mainland, where it apparently occurs to the exclusion of Meladema coriacea. Paper. (public access) – David T. Bilton , Ignacio Ribera. A revision of Meladema diving beetles (Coleoptera, Dytiscidae), with the description of a new species from the central Mediterranean based on molecules and morphology. ZooKeys, 2017; 702: 45 DOI: 10.3897/zookeys.702.14787 More.

There’s a lot of this kind of thing out there. We need a genomic definition of what a species even is, as opposed to the long-running mock tournament between “lumpers” and “splitters.” That’s personal philosophy, not quantification.

See also: Speciation: “More than 10 percent of all bird species have been known to hybridize at least once”

Genomics is upsetting the classification of bird species Why is it taking so long to organize claims about speciation in manner worthy of science?

Nineteen new “species” of gecko? Or 19 new fundraising opportunities…?

and

Nothing says “Darwin snob” like indifference to the mess that the entire concept of speciation is in

One Reply to “A common species of beetle turns out to be two species

  1. 1
    Bob O'H says:

    We need a genomic definition of what a species even is, as opposed to the long-running mock tournament between “lumpers” and “splitters.” That’s personal philosophy, not quantification.

    That’s essentially what the barcode of life project is doing. But it really doesn’t help with species definitions, because it’s not obvious what sequences to use, or what threshold to use to delimit species, is correct (in the sense that it will reflect something that is biologically meaningful).

Leave a Reply