Chapter

Conservation Systematics: The <i>Bufo boreas</i> Species Group

Anna M. Goebel

in Amphibian Declines

Published by University of California Press

Published in print June 2005 | ISBN: 9780520235922
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520929432 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520235922.003.0030
Conservation Systematics: The Bufo boreas Species Group

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This chapter describes how systematics and taxonomy can better address conservation issues in both theoretical and utilitarian ways. It begins with a discussion of organismic diversity and how systematics and Linnaean taxonomy have failed to meet the needed description and quantification of diversity for conservation purposes. It then argues that recognizing diversity is more critical than recognizing species, and suggests how diversity can be incorporated into systematics using measures of phylogenetic diversity and phylogenetic taxonomy. Finally, the chapter suggests three utilitarian ways that conservation systematics can incorporate diversity into management and politics: set priorities for conservation; reconstruct the Endangered Species Act of 1973; and mitigate loss of total diversity by a procedure that identifies acceptable losses. To illustrate problems and solutions, the chapter uses examples from North American bufonids, especially the western toad (Bufo boreas) species group.

Keywords: Bufo boreas; systematics; taxonomy; conservation; diversity; management; politics; Endangered Species Act; bufonids

Chapter.  9314 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences

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