Content Author Object Flagger Flag Created Reason Resolved by Resolution
Man O' Wars (Genus Physalia) tonyrebelo Thu, 14 Feb 2019 08:11:23 +0000

Heads up: proposal to deviate from WORMS

tonyrebelo

abandoned: merger proposed

Comments

see previous flags, esp. https://www.inaturalist.org/flags/318038 and also comments at https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/16163942#activity_comment_2558987

The aim is to recognize five species, in contrast to WORMS which recongizes only one species. Specifically in Australia there appear to be 4 "forms" that should probably be regarded as species, that it will be useful to have the public (and CS) aware of and monitoring. Under the current circumstances these new species are unlikely to be described soon, although their circumscriptions are apparently understood.

Physalia physalia - Atlantic Man-o-War = the large multi-tentacled form from the Atlantic
Physalia utriculosus - Common (Indo-Pacific) Bluebottle = the smaller single-tentacled form from the Indo-Pacific.
Physalis sp 1 "full crest" ( single main fishing tentacle, and a prominent crest along the full length of the float) Crested Bluebottle
Physalis sp 2 "no crest" ( single main fishing tentacle and no crest) Barrel Bluebottle
Physalis sp 3 "mulit-tentacled" (multi-tentacled causing Irukandji syndrome) Irukandji Bluebottle

Comments please.

Posted by tonyrebelo over 3 years ago (Flag)

Profuse thanks for this very helpful, most practical and suitably concise update on the taxonomy in what appears to citizens like me to be a difficult and often frustrating,confusing area.

Posted by davemmdave over 3 years ago (Flag)

Sounds good Tony, but why not call physalis the Portugese Man-o-war as that's been used for perhaps centuries and folks will recognise it?

Unlike me, you have been around this forum for a long while, so why don't you go ahead and see if you can make any headway getting it into the database?

Posted by doctocoral over 3 years ago (Flag)

Done. Not sure we have general approval for this though. No dissenters yet, which I supposed is a tacit agreement?

Posted by tonyrebelo over 3 years ago (Flag)

@loarie another undescribed species case

Posted by bouteloua over 3 years ago (Flag)

If you are worried about undescribed species, then stay away from Psoralea and Indigofera.

Posted by tonyrebelo over 3 years ago (Flag)

I'm not "worried" about them :) they just need consensus and documentation in the Curator Guide as to how they should be handled.

Posted by bouteloua over 3 years ago (Flag)

Guidance and protocols are always good and reassuring!

Thanks.

I think the point here (Indigofera, Aspalathus, Psoralea) is that active CS hunting down of these undescribed species is in process and with the involvement of taxonomists busy describing these.

For Pysalus, we have an intended awareness campaign around these in Australia to try and get more data.

Posted by tonyrebelo over 3 years ago (Flag)

I'm trying to understand how this is different from other cases where there is a widely known, morphologically distinctive organism that is undescribed and I was told not to add it to the database (example: the "chinstrap jawfish", Opistognathus sp. has appeared in several books, but never been described). I can see arguments both ways on this, but my understanding was that the iNat admins didn't want this to be done.

Posted by maractwin over 3 years ago (Flag)

Ssshhhhh.....

Posted by doctocoral over 3 years ago (Flag)

You asked for permission and were denied.
We will ask forgiveness if we are decried.

Posted by tonyrebelo over 3 years ago (Flag)

I'll leave it to @loarie to weigh in here, but should this deviation not be documented a Taxon Framework?

Posted by tiwane over 3 years ago (Flag)

Rather than the disruption of pushing unpublished names into the taxonomic hierarchy, another approach would be to use the "tag name" field under "Observation Fields".

That still allows observations to be separated into different groups (and for these groups to be retrieved), provided the identifiers agree on a standardised tag name.

Posted by leonperrie over 3 years ago (Flag)

Can you point me to a paper or article describing these new taxons that have been created? Even if it's not a format scientific description, what's your basis for these? And if there isn't anything documenting these, I will strongly advocate that they be deleted.

Posted by maractwin over 3 years ago (Flag)

I'm all for including them (and numerous other undescribed but well recognised species such as the "chinstrap jawfish", Opistognathus sp.). They are demonstrably distinct taxonomic entities that have yet to be formally named and to disregard them until they are, doesn't seem in keeping with the iNat goal of documenting biodiversity. Taxonomists are an endangered breed and, for many taxonomic groups, there simply aren't enough of them to keep pace with the rate of discovery so it could be many years before they are described. However, if they are to be accepted as deviations (presumably from WoRMs), they should be clearly marked with a reference [e.g. Physalia sp.1 (sensu Gershwin et al. 2010)] and a recognisable common name so that there is no ambiguity about the taxon ID. Once the taxa have have received a formal taxonomic treatment these names can be merged with the new formal names or with existing names if they are found to belong to a known species.

Note - my understanding is that it is erroneous to associate Physalis sp 3 "multi-tentacled" with Irukandji syndrome and definitely wrong to label it "Irukandji Bluebottle". I believe they were long suspected of being responsible for Irukandji syndrome until it was discovered that the culprits were Cubozoan species such as Carukia barnesi and Malo spp. now known collectively as Irukandji jellyfish.

Posted by rfoster over 3 years ago (Flag)

We are actually working on getting WoRMS to include P. utriculus right now.

You are mistaken about the Irukandji syndrome. Along with numerous carybdeids, the multi-tentacled form of Physalia in Australia is still suspected of producing the syndrome.
https://www.australiangeographic.com.au/topics/wildlife/2016/11/australian-bluebottles/
https://www.theherald.com.au/story/5839959/perfect-storm-for-bluebottles-in-qld/?cs=7

Posted by doctocoral over 3 years ago (Flag)

@doctocoral interesting, thanks - I stand corrected. Probably all the more reason to have these accepted into the iNat taxonomy, then, if one is of medical importance.

Posted by rfoster over 3 years ago (Flag)

I agree.

Posted by doctocoral over 3 years ago (Flag)

How's this for the ultimate maverick mischievous comment?
I am yet to be convinced that Irukanji Syndrome is organic.
I say that without having even bothered to update my ancient and VERY limited knowledge on the topic.
And I accept that iNat is NOT the right place to be stirring any medical pot.

Posted by davemmdave over 3 years ago (Flag)

Our president a few years back argued that a syndrome could not be a disease and consequently held back AIDS support to hospitals, probably killing thousands as a consequence. So beware of ultimate maverick mischief - it might get you onto a political advisory group (assuming that this is something that you dont want).

Posted by tonyrebelo over 3 years ago (Flag)

Dear @davemmdave

There are several dead people who, if they could, would not agree with you. And Dr Terresa Carette who got stung several time while researching the jellyfish that cause the syndrome now has permanent hear damage.
But if you want it from the horses mouth, the next link is the story of Jack Barnes, the medico who proved that a jellyfish caused the syndrome, by stinging himself and his son.

https://litfl.com/jack-barnes-and-the-irukandji-enigma/

https://www.mja.com.au/journal/2002/177/7/fatal-envenomation-jellyfish-causing-irukandji-syndrome

https://www.mja.com.au/journal/2004/181/11/irukandji-syndrome-northern-western-australia-emerging-health-problem

https://www.stuff.co.nz/world/australia/87106798/australian-woman-warns-others-after-nearfatal-irukandji-jellyfish-sting-on-great-barrier-reef

https://www.ambulance.qld.gov.au/docs/QAS-Irukandji-jellyfish.pdf

Posted by doctocoral over 3 years ago (Flag)

Hi all, lets restrict this thread to justifications for or against adding the undescribed Physalia species to the iNat taxonomy.

Posted by rfoster over 3 years ago (Flag)

@rfoster you are spot on.

Posted by davemmdave over 3 years ago (Flag)

(but it was another person who 1st mentioned medical aspects in this loop so I'm unrepentant at personal level....just for my own closure and clarity's sake, not trying to be irritating)

Posted by davemmdave over 3 years ago (Flag)

No worries, Dave!

Posted by rfoster over 3 years ago (Flag)

Hi @rfoster
That is only part of the story. Those on the dark side also believe that the multi-tentacled form is Physalia physalis and that its sting is worse because with more tentacles it delivers more venom.

Posted by doctocoral over 3 years ago (Flag)

Irukandji Syndrome should be renamed Marine Jellyfish Sting Syndrome.

Posted by davemmdave over 3 years ago (Flag)

I finally read the paper at https://www.researchgate.net/publication/242650792_Medusae_Cnidaria_of_Moreton_Bay_Queensland_Australia

I'll quit objecting to this if that paper is cited as the source for these three new taxons (they currently do not cite any source), and the names are changed to not use parenthesis, which causes a number of bugs in the iNat site. We could file bug reports about those, but parenthesis are not ever expected to appear in a scientific name, so it makes more sense to fix that here.

Posted by maractwin over 3 years ago (Flag)

where does one add the source?
"parenthesis are not ever expected to appear in a scientific name" - that is not true at all. Parentheses are standard in scientific names, for instance for subgenera and sections and subsections (e.g. Protea (Protea) cynaroides,), as well as in author names (which are obligatorily part of the scientific name for plants) to denote that the original was in a different genus. Note that it is not valid to have the specific epithet as the entire scientific name, and similarly the subgenus should Always be accompanied by the generic name. E.g. Protea subgenus is wrong, it must be Protea (Protea) subgenus. I wondered why iNaturalist failed to comply with this convention: am I right in that it might be because the parenthesis causes bugs in the display? Seems like a good reason to fix up the bug, rather than present the names incorrectly (esp. since it is creating confusion (e.g. is Protea a genus or a section?, sections can have duplicates, but with the generic name must be unique))

Posted by tonyrebelo over 3 years ago (Flag)

At the time you create the taxon there's a box labeled "Source" which you can also change if you click on the "Curation" button and choose "Edit Taxon". Sources are items in a database, so you can choose an existing one, or add a new one.

The whole thing about punctuation characters in names is beyond me. @kueda

Posted by maractwin over 3 years ago (Flag)

@kiwifergus? I've messaged you my reply.

Posted by davemmdave over 3 years ago (Flag)
Posted by tonyrebelo about 2 years ago (Flag)

Add a Comment

Sign In or Sign Up to add comments