Talk:Metasequoia

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The current collaborations of the month are Politics of Oregon & Oregon Children's Theatre.

It is odd that the conservation status of the Dawn Redwood is listed as Critically Endangered, but as the article correctly states it is now a commonly grown tree throughout temperate regions worldwide. To label a common, thriving tree as critically endangered simply because its last known wild habitat is under pressure calls into question the objectivity of those who make such a designation. The preservation and range expansion of the Dawn Redwood has been one of the most successful ever undertaken for a species once considered extinct.

While I somewhat agree that the plant itself may not be "critically endangered", it is a combination of factors that justify it being in this category. As you mentioned, it's native habitat is dwindling. That's a primary reason why many species are placed on endangered lists. For example, many animal species may be kept in captivity and may thrive (through captive breeding programs), but wild populations continue to decline and population bottlenecks and the founder effect may occur. Because a species is cultivated and rather "common" as a landscape plant does not make it less threatened. Another factor is dispersal. If human influence was removed, would this common species be able to create a stand of Metasequoia? I'm not certain it would. In the possible outcome of complete destruction of its native habitat, it may cease to have natural resevoir. Do not confuse ornamental plantings with an expansion of range. Just my thoughts on this Rkitko 09:07, 12 February 2006 (UTC)

Some parts of natural history regarding this tree above may be not right - please www.metasequoia.org for detail. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 207.180.130.214 (talkcontribs) 15:24, 19 August 2006 (UTC)

Everything now checked against Farjon's monograph - MPF 21:50, 19 August 2006 (UTC)

Fast growing tree?[edit]

Article claims it is a fast growing tree... But how fast does it grow? How long does it live? Seriously, some very basic information about the tree is missing. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 71.246.212.134 (talk) 02:24, 21 June 2010 (UTC)

Merging[edit]

I propose merging Metasequoia glyptostroboides into this article, for two reasons:

  1. The guidelines at Wikipedia:Tree of life#Article titles and Wikipedia:Naming conventions (flora)#Ranks state that a genus with a single species should have only a genus article (see, e.g., Sequoiadendron).
  2. The articles already have a fair amount of overlap: combining them will make the final article much more complete.

hike395 (talk) 12:21, 14 November 2011 (UTC)

  • Oppose. The single species is the only extant one; the others are extinct fossil taxa. That's why the two should remain separate. Discussion of Metasequoia glyptostroboides in the genus article is to put it in context with the other species. Rkitko (talk) 12:38, 14 November 2011 (UTC)
My interpretation of these guidelines is that they count only extant species. Shall we start a discussion at WT:WikiProject Tree of Life to get clarity? —hike395 (talk) 18:34, 14 November 2011 (UTC)
I was involved in developing WP:FLORA. At least from my perspective, the relevant passage was not meant to exclude fossil taxa. I've seen several genus articles expanded to include fossil taxa, e.g. Aldrovanda. Sure, start a discussion at ToL. I'm less familiar with the ToL guideline, though I suspect many there will agree that extinct taxa are a good reason to expand genus articles separate from the extant species. Rkitko (talk) 19:33, 14 November 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose. I agree with Rkitko, the guideline does not exclude extinct taxa. I have personally created several articles for extinct species in genera that are now monotypic. Metasequoia has at least three very notable extinct species currently. M. occidentalis, M. foxii, and M. milleri. --Kevmin § 22:05, 14 November 2011 (UTC)
If those extinct Metasequoia species had articles (even stubby ones), then I would withdraw my merge suggestion immediately. This is why I think we should consider extant species --- is there enough verifiable material on extinct species to justify splitting a currently monotypic genus? Or, failing a general guideline, will there be enough material on those extinct Metasequoia species to make them notable (from a WP perspective)? —hike395 (talk) 07:40, 15 November 2011 (UTC)
I don't think the absence of potential articles is a good reason to merge. From my reading of this article, there seems to be plenty of coverage in the scientific literature for the extinct taxa and articles on them would be welcome additions to Wikipedia; they would certainly be notable. Species, much like other topics (secondary schools?), are inherently notable because they exist, or at least that's been the broad application of WP:N to them in the past. It is not our place to judge whether there is enough evidence in the literature for these extinct taxa, we just present the consensus view among the taxonomists. And, more to the point, Metasequoia is not monotypic. Each of those extinct taxa also has a type. So it would be a real error to merge the articles. Rkitko (talk) 12:31, 15 November 2011 (UTC)
This genus was originally described from the extinct species Metasequoia disticha in 1941 and this was not changed when the extant species was described in 1948 to my knowledge. Thus three, possibly four (not sure if M. disticha and M. occidentalis are synonyms now) species are accepted as valid.--Kevmin § 22:07, 15 November 2011 (UTC)
As a note, I have created an article for Metasequoia foxii and Sequoiadendron is actually a bad example to have brought up as it is not monotypic either (see Sequoiadendron chaneyi)--Kevmin § 23:06, 18 November 2011 (UTC)