Homonyms on EOL
Last updated 5 months ago
If the same taxon name is applied to different groups of organisms, you've got a homonym, and that can cause all kinds of problems for biodiversity databases like EOL. If homonyms go undetected, we may put content for different groups on the same taxon page. Please join the Homonym Hunters community and help us find all the homonyms on EOL!
This collection is for all kinds of homonyms:
Homonyms across nomenclatural codes (ICBN, ICZN, ICNB, ICTV) are allowed, so there are plenty of them. Example: Satyrium, the orchid genus and Satyrium, the butterfly genus.
At least in zoological nomenclature, homonyms are allowed if they refer to groups at different ranks. Example: Polyphaga, the roach genus and Polyphaga, the beetle suborder.
Within codes and ranks, homonyms are not allowed, so only one of the homonymous names can be valid/accepted. If EOL gets these invalid names from a provider, we will have a page for it, and we'll need to keep that page around until we get information about the valid replacement name. Example: Acanthurus, the surgeon fish genus and Acanthurus, the weevil genus.
Comprehensive lists of homonyms have also been compiled elsewhere:
Systema Naturae 2000: Homonyms
Wikispecies: List of valid homonyms