Talk:List of bats

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Formatting moving forward[edit]

Hi, I'm trying to fix up this list, so if you want to add on to it or improve it, you can help by keeping a consistent formatting:

  • Keep taxa alphabetized by subfamily, then genus, then by species
  • List a species' common name first (if there is one), then scientific name name
  • Italicize genus and species names (''Pteropus''=Pteropus)
  • Pipe around the common name, not the scientific name ([[Little brown bat]]=Little brown bat)
  • I know people have a lot of feelings about capitalization of common names, but just try to keep it "article title caps style"—capitalize the first letter of the first word only, unless other words of the common name are proper nouns (Big brown bat, New Georgian monkey-faced bat)

Cheers! Enwebb (talk) 20:46, 18 September 2017 (UTC)

Article name[edit]

I'm not a biologist but isn't the name of this article a little odd? All species in Order Chiroptera are placental mammals. Wouldn't a better name be List of Species or Sub taxa of Order Chiroptera? -- Mattinbgn\talk 22:30, 22 November 2007 (UTC)

I did a fork of the massive List of placental mammals (270k+). I'm not a biologist, so I forked along the topic headings, which were by Order. If you can reformat better, please do Mbisanz (talk) 22:55, 22 November 2007 (UTC)
Agreed. John Hill (talk) 01:26, 10 January 2015 (UTC)

Taxonomy and the use of capital letters in common names[edit]

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

The use of capital letters is inconsistent in this article. For example we have "Long-tongued Nectar Bat" (nectar and bat capitalised) while elsewhere we have "round-eared tube-nosed fruit bat" (all lower case).

I addressed this by applying the guidleines in http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style_(headings)#Animals.2C_plants.2C_and_other_organisms and converted all initials to lower case except for proper nouns, adjectives derived from proper nouns and the leading word of article names.

Common (vernacular) names of flora and fauna should be written in lower case—for example, oak or lion. There are a limited number of exceptions to this:

  1. Where the common name contains a proper noun, such as the name of a person or place, that proper noun should be capitalized (The Amur tiger may have a range of over 500 square kilometres; The Roosevelt elk is a subspecies of Cervus canadensis).
  2. For specific groups of organisms, there are specific rules of capitalization based on current and historic usage among those who study the organisms; for example, official common names of birds.
  3. In a very few cases, a set of officially established common names is recognized only within a country or a geographic region. #Those common names may be capitalized according to local custom, but it should be understood that not all editors will have access to the references needed to support these names; in such cases, using the general recommendation is also acceptable.

A redirect from an alternative capitalization should be created where it is used in an article title. In articles that cover two or more taxonomic groups, a consistent style of capitalisation should be used for species names. This could involve the use of:

  • scientific names throughout (often appropriate for specialist articles);
  • title case for common names of species throughout (per WP:BIRDS) and lower case for non-specific names such as eagle or bilberry, which may work well for articles with a broad coverage of natural history; or
  • lower-case initial letters for common names, which may work well for non-specialist articles that happen to refer to different taxonomic groups.

Another user has seen fit to apply his/her own personal preferences and revert the changes, leaving the list incosnistent and wrong by the standards of both Wikipedia and the written English language. I invite others to comment. At the end of the day if consensus is to ride roughshod over the guidelines and the English language then so be it but at least be consistent and capitalise everything in the list of bats article and update the guidelines. -- Timberframe (talk) 10:29, 17 October 2008 (UTC)

I have to warn you that you are inadvertently stepping into a hornet's nest. The capitalization used for mammal articles is a very heated issue and appears possibly headed to mediation. See the following discussions/fights as evidence:
So, the only real consensus reached at WP:MAMMAL is to leave articles how they are; you really only have a choice if you are creating a new article. You may want to step back from this unless you are willing to start mediation on this. If you do, I wish you luck! Rgrds. --Tombstone (talk) 11:43, 17 October 2008 (UTC)

Tombstone, thanks for the eye-opening response. Having followed some of your links it seems that there's a tiny minority, with the user who reverted my changes at the forefront, which is hell-bent on imposing their right to change the English language regardless of rational argument, tradition, established practice in learned journals and Wikipedia's guidelines. This issue is obviously an obsession for the tiny minority involved and I've no desire to get involved in their stupid disruptive POV pushing. I'm outa here -- Timberframe (talk) 12:11, 17 October 2008 (UTC)

That statement reminds of a userbox I saw the other day. It said that even if 300,000,000 make the same mistake, it is still a mistake. Page titles are supposed to be completely capitalized (besides words like "of", "the", "for", "a", etc.). Even if this is not the established Wikipedia guideline, it is an established English language guideline.[citation needed] I was just in English class a half-hour ago and I asked my professor. It is true. So just because the majority does something, that does not mean that it is right. Remember that.Matt (talk) 17:25, 17 October 2008 (UTC)

Matt, in case you hadn't noticed, this isn't your English class, it is Wikipedia. Your prof's opinion counts for nothing here unless he enters into the debate, and even then he's only one voice. Wiki is founded on a priciple of building consensus and Wikipedia's guidelines are a distillation of consensus, which means there has to be a majority agreement, and not just a noisy minority, in favour of changing them before they get changed. -- Timberframe (talk) 18:20, 17 October 2008 (UTC)

I'll say it again, the majority is not always right. People make mistakes. Once a large number of people believe something that is false, those that know it is wrong are afraid to stand up. That was not the opinion of just one English teacher. Every teacher I've ever had said that. I've researched this subject in the past. It is a simple rule and is not that hard to understand. You are wrong nothing you say can change fact. I recognize that you will very likely hold on to your flawed belief. So it is not worth my wasting time trying to convince you of the truth. So I'm leaving this discussion.--Matt (talk) 18:41, 17 October 2008 (UTC)


The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.