Back to the future: The proper name for red-backed voles is Clethrionomys Tilesius and not Myodes Pallas

Boris Kryštufek, Alexey S. Tesakov, Vladimir S. Lebedev, Anna A. Bannikova, Nataliya I. Abramson, Georgy Shenbrot

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations

Abstract

Two names (Clethrionomys and Myodes) are used interchangeably for red-backed voles, which is contrary to one of the fundamental principles of zoological nomenclature, that each taxon has a single and unique valid name. Fixation of Mus lemmus Linnaeus, 1758, as the type of Myodes Pallas, 1811, meets the requirements stipulated in the Article 69.1.1 of the 4th edition of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature, and is therefore valid. Hence, the genus group name Myodes is a junior synonym of Lemmus Link, 1795, and is not available for red-backed voles. The oldest valid name for red-backed voles is Clethrionomys Tilesius, 1850, with the type species (Mus rutilus Pallas, 1779) subsequently designated by Palmer (1928).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)214-217
Number of pages4
JournalMammalia
Volume84
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2020

Keywords

  • type concept
  • type fixation
  • zoological nomenclature

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Animal Science and Zoology

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