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Division (biology)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Division is a taxonomic rank in biological classification that is used differently in zoology and in botany.

In botany and mycology, division refers to a rank equivalent to phylum. The use of either term is allowed under the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature,[1] and both are commonly used in scientific literature.

The main Divisions of land plants are the Marchantiophyta (liverworts), Anthocerotophyta (hornworts), Bryophyta (mosses), Filicophyta (ferns), Sphenophyta (horsetails), Cycadophyta (cycads), Ginkgophyta (ginkgo)s, Pinophyta (conifers), Gnetophyta (gnetophytes), and the Magnoliophyta (Angiosperms, flowering plants). The Magnoliophyta now dominate terrestrial ecosystems, comprising 80% of vascular plant species.[2]

In zoology, the term division is applied to an optional rank subordinate to the infraclass and superordinate to the cohort. A widely used classification (e.g. Carroll 1988[3]) recognises teleost fishes as a Division Teleostei within Class Actinopterygii (the ray-finned fishes). Less commonly (as in Milner 1988[4]), living tetrapods are ranked as Divisions Amphibia and Amniota within the clade of vertebrates with fleshy limbs (Sarcopterygii).


  1. ^ McNeill, J.; et al., eds. (2012). International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants (Melbourne Code), Adopted by the Eighteenth International Botanical Congress Melbourne, Australia, July 2011 (electronic ed.). International Association for Plant Taxonomy. Retrieved 2017-05-14.
  2. ^ Judd, Walter S.; Campbell, Christopher S.; Kellogg, Elizabeth A.; Stevens, Peter F.; Donoghue, Michael J. (2002). Plant systematics, a phylogenetic approach (2nd ed.). Sunderland MA, USA: Sinauer Associates Inc. ISBN 0-87893-403-0.
  3. ^ (Carroll 1988)
  4. ^ (Milner 1988)

Works cited[edit]

  • Carroll, Robert L. (1988), Vertebrate Paleontology and Evolution, New York: W.H. Freeman & Co., ISBN 0-716-7-1822-7
  • Milner, Andrew (1988), "The relationships and origin of living amphibians", in M.J. Benton (ed.), 'The Phylogeny and Classification of the Tetrapods, vol. 1: Amphibians, Reptiles, Birds, Oxford: Clarendon Press, pp. 59–102