Question about taxon splits

I’m not sure if this is a bug or how taxon splits are supposed to work, so I put this in general.
Vermiculated Screech-Owl has a taxon change (split), that doesn’t seem to have been committed yet. 2 of the new taxons, Chocó Screech-Owl and Foothill Screech-Owl, can be used and can obtain research grade (the 3rd one hasn’t been used yet). Is this how taxon splits are supposed to work? I thought that until the split has been committed, the new taxons will be inactive.

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This type of thing has been discussed in other topics in this forum. As I remember, it’s something about only two people having the ability to commit taxon changes on birds–I don’t remember any reason given for that. So other people create the new taxon pages so they can make the new identifications anyway. Here’s one of the discussions:

https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/plans-for-2019-clements-bird-taxonomy-updates/5397

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People can’t create new birds, they will only stay inactive. This is another example where the bird curators created and activated the new ones, which should never be done until they are ready to process the change. But here and in several other cases they did it anyway.

And yes only 2 people can fix it

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I’m sorry if I misspoke. I was just thinking of Melanitta deglandi, which has a taxon page and is showing up in identifications even though the Melanitta fusca taxon page shows that the split to Melanitta deglandi hasn’t been committed. I thought this was the same situation with the owl.

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That’s the exact same situation, the bird taxa managers added and activated the new species for the split, but never ran the split. It has been that way for 16 months and several dozen requests to resolve it.

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Thanks! Do you know what happens when the split is committed? Do all the IDs for the new taxons stay or do they get updated?

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It depends on some specific issues:

  • for the split to be run, there are supposed to be atlases done for each of the impacted destination species that define where they are found. Identifications that fall into those specified geographies will be updated to the appropriate species. If there is any overlap in those atlas ranges, then the records get bumped back up to genus level
  • any id’s done by users who have opted out of community ID and accepting updates due to taxa changes will remain unchanged.
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Ah, okay, thanks!

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So here is an example where because both species included in the split are found in Iceland, the ID’s get pushed back to genus.

They finally after 16 months did the Melanitta implementation.

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Well, I guess I have to wait 4 more months. ;)

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Add a flag to this owl, I did the same for lichen swap that was waiting to be done since 2016 and it was finally resolved in an hour.

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The difference is all curators can do the lichen one, only 2 can do the bird.

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If you say nothing they won’t come for this taxon in years easily, so it’s the choice of a person interested in taxonomy changes be done.

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Probably worth holding off on bird taxon changes for the moment.

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Most curators, even the really active ones are not willing to tackle fungi/lichen swaps. There is no reference the site uses, there is no agreement about one to use, the professionals in the area cite issues with all of them.

Fungi taxonomy is complicated, changing and full of dispute. It tends to lead to arguments etc. So many curators prefer to leave them to mycologists/lichenologists to look at, but there are very few among curators.

Additionally that swap was created by an iNat staff member who appeared to intentionally leave it unresolved due to it being potentially a controversial change, and many curators won’t go against iNat staff decisions.

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