Subject: Re: Jaegers/changing names
Date: Sep 8 11:32:14 1994
From: Alvaro Patricio Jaramillo - jaramill at

Re: Jaegers and Skuas,

I find it interesting that as English names have been standardized
there has been a tendency to opt for names that convey taxonomic relationships.
Thus, a lot of people out there would love to attach a "Plover" to the end
of Killdeer, and "Rail" to the end of Sora etc. Well if you accept that this
is a positive aspect of nomenclature, I don't necessarily accept this, then
the names Jaeger and Skua should reflect the phylogeny of these birds.
The latest work being done on the subject, out of the University of
Toronto, has shown that Pomarine Jaeger is more closely related to the
large "Skuas" than the two other jaegers. So one could argue that we should
change that one to Pomarine Skua, and leave the other two as jaegers.
Now that would really be confusing to beginners!

Alvaro Jaramillo
jaramill at
Vancouver, B.C.