Synopsis top ↑
The authors of this paper cannot abstain from the temptation to
repeat here the frequently quoted sentence of Sir Francis Galton:
"General impressions are never to be trusted". Numerous little myths
have been published on non-variability or variability and their
dependencies on fungal spores; species conceptions, evolutionary
schemes, etc. have been built up on the basis of several
myths. Reasonable use of biometrics enables us to eliminate these
myths by knowledge and making approximations closer to the truth;
based on a biometrical approach and considering the concept of
population allows one to describe much better than ever before the
variable species, and really determine whether it exists in nature; to
reduce the amount of "dubious" species which have been accumulating
for the last one and a half centuries; to classify and characterize
better the "good" species.
At the same time we must not forget that application of the biometrical methods without a biological interpretation of the results enables us to camouflage with the aureole of objectivity any subjective statements and hypotheses, founded on insufficient data.
The authors of this paper clearly admit that the weakness of ohr monograph lies in the still too scanty data and in the fact that only few characters applied in the taxonomy of fungi, namely spore characters, are dealt with in isolation from other characters. But the authors hope that they have offered to the fungal taxonomists some food for thought and to stimulate them in thinking of populations and not simply individuals.