Related topics: species

Changes in human diet shed light on human evolution

A shift in diet has long been seen as one of the critical adaptations that distinguishes our own genus Homo from earlier human ancestors. The timing and context of this dietary shift, however, has been hotly debated. A recent ...

Scientists examine the ethnobotanical uses of stramonium

The Datura genus, which includes stramonium, encompasses a number of plant species that have featured heavily in the traditional medicine and popular culture of countries such as Mexico and Spain.

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Genus

In biology, a genus (plural: genera) is a low-level taxonomic rank used in the biological classification of living and fossil organisms, which is an example of definition by genus and differentia. Genera and higher taxonomic levels such as families are used in biodiversity studies, particularly in fossil studies since species cannot always be confidently identified and genera and families typically have longer stratigraphic ranges than species.

The term comes from Latin genus "descent, family, type, gender", cognate with Greek: γένος – genos, "race, stock, kin".

The composition of a genus is determined by a taxonomist. The standards for genus classification are not strictly codified, and hence different authorities often produce different classifications for genera. In the hierarchy of the binomial classification system, genus comes above species and below family.

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