Principles of Taxonomy

What is Taxonomy?

Species definition

What is a hierarchy?

Phylogenetic tree

What does the rest of the hierarchy look like?



What is taxonomy?


Taxonomy refers to the classification of living things by giving unique names to each species, and creating a hierarchy based on evolutionary descent. This is a challenging task, as most species that have ever lived on this planet are now extinct, and many more alive today have yet to be discovered and classified.


In order to achieve the above, though, we need a definition for both species and hierarchy. In the old days, a species was known as a collection of individuals similar enough in resemblance to be put in the same box. This was purely based on physical features. Today we know that similar physical characteristics on their own aren’t enough to define a species.


Species definition


species is defined in terms of observable physical features as well as the ability to produce fertile..


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