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Posted by: DMong at Mon Sep 26 13:19:21 2011  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by DMong ]  
   

...or simply a "Black Ratsnake" which they have always been known to everyone as for many decades until all of this recent taxonomic change and confusion..

In my opinion the new name "Western Ratsnake" is FAR more confusing to everyone even though that is the latest taxonomic nomenclature for that specific animal now.

I think that all of this constant "re-inventing the wheel" due to recent DNA science is many times very counter-productive to the whole idea of visual taxonomic classification. Ironically, this was the entire idea for taxonomy in the first place....to describe the visual characteristics of their individual phenotypes(visual outward looks) and scalation in order to have a more standard and accepted way to classify regardless of their different common names that are used in different regions.

If these scientific groups didn't justify all the funding and time that goes into this sort of thing, and continually come up with newer findings and data, it would probably be looked at as a complete waste of time and funds if they didn't periodically come up with these ideas to re-invent the "wheel" that has worked perfectly well for all these years, and they would be out of jobs...LOL!

I can guarantee that there is some geneflow from both S. obsoletus and S. alleghaniensis in at least close proximity to the Mississippi River due to many naturally occuring events over the millenia. Floods, swimming over, and floating over onto either side on debri have certainly had to have happened countless times in the past. As to just how far on both sides this is evident in their DNA, from how broad an area, or even how many different snakes in their sample study were used for these conclusions is probably the real question I would think.

Alot of times when scentists have a biased notion to find something, they will often find it somehow and disregard other things contrary to their goal..



~Doug
-----
"a snake in the grass is a GOOD thing"


serpentinespecialties.webs.com


   

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