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 Definition The science of life — of complex, self-organizing, information-processing systems living in the past, present or future. [d] [e]
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 Workgroup category Biology [Categories OK]
 Talk Archive 1  English language variant Not specified

Formating conventions

  • The reference format style started in Horizontal gene transfer is being currently followed in an attempt at typographical consistency. Books are being cited here by the authors' full name and ISBN numbers are being used to minimize needed detail.
  • At some later stage we may well use non abbreviated jounal titles for clarity but currently this would expand the size of some articles with many references
  • "Quotes", for direct quotes, 'scientific method' for special emphasis.
  • Also possible is use of reference method: <ref name=Smith> giving names to citation when first used David Tribe 20:09, 26 January 2007 (CST)

A future style manual: citation from PloS Biology Slightly modified?

A section of discussion on development of CZ standards for citation has been copied to Help:citation style talk then deleted here

Taking raw PubMed text and PLos izing it, and shortening authors.

RAW starting Pubmed text:

1: Bernstein E, Caudy AA, Hammond SM, Hannon GJ.

Role for a bidentate ribonuclease in the initiation step of RNA interference.

Nature. 2001 Jan 18;409(6818):363-6. PMID: 11201747 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

The PubMed to PloS briefened conversion with only deletion and date typing and insertion of et al. Probably suited to a future automatic software algorithm for Pubmed conversion.

Exhibit A

1. Bernstein E et al. (2001) Role for a bidentate ribonuclease in the initiation step of RNA interference. Nature. 409:363-6. PMID 11201747


Warnings: alterations to any figures and templates used in the draft page may affect the appearance of Biology approved page

General commentary, edit context discussions

I'm happy with it but I have to tell you my spelling is an issue and I'm not in a position to bless it from that angle. David Goodman raised an objection in the Forums over having the sperm picture captioned "magnified" without an exact magnification as being a terrible blunder, wrote that he would not have approved the article previously had he noticed it. I myself, do not see it that way as I think it is being used in the context of the homunculus and van Leeuwenhook, and illustrates an important point in the article very nicely - I think the exact magnification is a trivial point. I would certainly agree with him if the article was about sperm cells, however and used the same picture with the same caption as it does here.. I bring this up though for explicit discussion, because I do not wish to ignore his opinion-which I generally respect. Anyway, I approve the new draft. Nancy Sculerati MD 10:38, 24 January 2007 (CST)

I measured and estimated the magnif as close to 150x. Fixed legend. I see differences between you and DG on this as due to different conceptions of what CZ should do. I think your concept actually works well for the lead article in a general area, but DGs conception is important for mmany subsidiary articles and that there is a role for both concepts. David Tribe 15:17, 24 January 2007 (CST)
Pixel counts suggest 125x is more precise David Tribe 22:23, 26 January 2007 (CST)

Thanks for fixing it.Please look down at the next section, read the letter and comment.Nancy Sculerati MD 15:21, 24 January 2007 (CST)

Looks good too me, if you still need a vote. Chris Day (Talk) 01:22, 25 January 2007 (CST)

Article Criticisms from outsider 1/23/07

I recently received an email from someone who had read and reviewed the copy of the Biology article that we posted publically. Could you all please take a look at it here, ideally before re-approving. (note that I didn't write it, he just emailed it to me). --ZachPruckowski 11:51, 24 January 2007 (CST)

Do you have any idea of what the yellow marks mean? I don't.Nancy Sculerati MD 12:24, 24 January 2007 (CST)

They are comments - hover over them with your mouse and they show up. Ian Ramjohn 13:02, 24 January 2007 (CST)

Now that I have read the comments, I must say I liked them better as yellow marks. They are written in the tone of the All-knowing, which is particularly amusing coming from an anonymous commentor. The comments seem to assume that the article has no hyperlinks, and that "being encyclopedic" is something that any of us hold as a positive absolute value. If the person is actually interested in making constructive comments, let them sign up and join in. Nancy Sculerati MD 13:46, 24 January 2007 (CST)

The reader has at least noticed that Nancy has injected emotional engagement and subjective judgement into it. (irony warning). Having been trained to write flat but lucid scientific journal articles I noticed too!. But I value a LOT what Nancy has brought to the table. On the other hand, maybe I can retrieve some valid small revision from the yellow taking care not to obliterate Nancy. Exactly why emphasis is verboten I cannot fathom though. May need to extend Approval deadline a day or too. We may as well do it well. David Tribe 15:35, 24 January 2007 (CST)
PS Just to be sure, what I ment by emotion is esthetic appeal and reader engagement with a sympathetic style. Ive happily accepted from NS several improvments to my unengaging prose. I also take to point that anonymous jusgement are of very low priority, and by devaluing those we elevate those who put their real names on the line. Im thinking to see if buried in that yellow there snippets of value. Ill also do a WORD auto spell check David Tribe 17:53, 24 January 2007 (CST)

Hey, don't kill me over it, I'm just passing along what I was sent by that guy (because he happened to catch me in the IRC channel). I don't care how you take it, I'm just passing it up the line. I don't know if he has any sort of relevant training at all, or how seriously you should take it. That's up to you guys. I didn't even read it through all the way. --ZachPruckowski 15:43, 24 January 2007 (CST)

P.S. no angst felt towards anyone by David Tribe.
I was trying to be funny with "kill me over it". I don't feel angsted upon or whatever :-) --ZachPruckowski 18:10, 24 January 2007 (CST)
Prize Quote from the yellow anonymous commentator

"The start of this paragraph is more appropriate for an essay. An encyclopedic article should not try to communicate with the reader." [sic]

Well well, thats exactly what Nancy's done: an essay on biology as a hyperlinked lead into the huge resources we want to develop, a hypertext preface if you like, and surely that's one of the reasons we liked it? It succeeds in communicating with the reader. Its a good thing that we haven't called Citizendium an encyclopedia, and isnt this comment an encouragement for us to do something other than what this reader suggests? David Tribe 00:16, 25 January 2007 (CST)

To finish with the yellow critique: I have gone through the yellow points and considered every issue. There is little of substance, I tried hard and found one redundant word.

Mostly, the writer has a serious lack of comprehension of the role of good communication, and poor judgement about what Citizendium should hope for. The 17th century biologists who mapped veins can wait for The History of biology. I put in a link to Kary Mullis, and to Cell (biology). Nancy - you can sleep well tonight, feeling thoroughly vindicated. Lets move on David Tribe 01:00, 25 January 2007 (CST)

Sounds good. Again, I didn't really even look at it. I just passed on what had been emailed to me. I certainly hope no one lost sleep over it. --ZachPruckowski 19:56, 25 January 2007 (CST)

Zach, just passing something from an anonymous person without checking it is not nothing. It's a mistake. If an anonymous person contacts you by e-mail in the future please reply with the CZ address and let them register and make their own criticisms directly. That's the whole point of the no anonymous contributions policy: there are no anonymous contributions. And, as this example (which was no big deal, but was somewhat hurtful and was a waste of everybody's time-including yours) nicely illustrates: anonymous contributions are more likely to be of trivial value than attributed statements and criticisms. They are more likely to be mean spirited, and the fact that the knowledge and background of the person making them cannot be evaluated in any way makes them difficult to assess appropriately. Nancy Sculerati MD 20:19, 25 January 2007 (CST)

I would normally not have done it, but we specifically put this article up as a model and to seek commentary. I certainly am fully in favor of the anti-anonymity rule, but we did put this up as outside Citizendium. I apologize if it hurt anyone and I apologize for wasting people's time. -- ZachPruckowski 21:22, 25 January 2007 (CST)
Nancy, are you taking his criticisms personally? I don't think many of the editors comments were that off the wall and he had some interesting ideas as well. I have a hard time thinking that it was a waste of anyone's time. It's always nice to see where others think writing can be improved. -Tom Kelly (Talk) 21:34, 25 January 2007 (CST)

I just read the anons comments and non seemed to be out of order. In fact, they all seemed pretty trivial which in its own right is a complement. Chris Day (Talk) 22:48, 25 January 2007 (CST)

Please update approved article after vetting this change. 1/22/2007

Added link to 'orphan' article "Systems Biology", per Larry's request

Anthony.Sebastian (Talk) 14:07, 23 January 2007 (CST)

Edits since first approval

I request to get this edit edited by editors and considered for approval. -Tom Kelly (Talk) 18:43, 4 January 2007 (CST)

Personally, I think people should be able to add little links like this and get them in to the approved article faster. I think this could seriously be a negative to CZ if this small issue isn't addressed. However, CZ does a great job getting scientific 'experts' involved in editing. However, ease of addition is an important concept in wikis. -Tom Kelly (Talk) 18:47, 4 January 2007 (CST)

I concur. I also made a request to fix spelling errors in the approved version (a couple of the errors being rather glaring), but the talk page does not seem to be active, so I am also making this request here as well. --Ted Zellers 22:37, 12 January 2007 (CST)


Talk about Biology, the major, as part of the definition of biology (?) or would that be another article. -Tom Kelly (Talk) 18:43, 4 January 2007 (CST)

Perhaps a redirect to Education in biology? DavidGoodman 02:21, 13 January 2007 (CST)

Minor Edits

Thomas, I don't want to turn you off, but at this point in the CZ pilot, we are not so much into minor edits, and this is why: we have an idea to work on a large number of articles and get them into an "approved" status. It seems that the idea of an approved article in CZ is not the same as a WP feature article. Instead, it's a coherent article that is true and useful. The idea being that a user can access CZ and, reading approved article, feel confident that this is the real deal, so to speak. On a wiki where changes are constant, or at least very frequent, it's a dynamic state where improvements happen quickly, but so do mistakes or language that might not be an outright mistake, but something that confuses the explanation. There are only a few of us working now, and the system for approval is cumbersome. There are so many important topics that need to be totally rewritten that the task of tweaking an article that is in good enough shape to have been approved is not a current priority. Hopefully, when there are more people and a new server, this is not an issue. Biology was the first approved article and its far from perfect, but its basically ok. As far as Biology the major, that would be another article. We will get back to incorporating your, and other, suggestions from the draft into the next edition of the approved biology, but realistically, revised editions of approved articles are not going to be daily or weekly or, at this early stage, even monthly. The draft, on the other hand, is open to continual updates. That's how I see it, anyway. Nancy Sculerati MD 21:53, 12 January 2007 (CST)

P.S. I acually don't agree with the definitions of microbiology that seem to be the edits in question. Sorry. Nancy Sculerati MD 22:09, 12 January 2007 (CST)

am I understanding this correctly? You disagree that medical microbiology includes the study of bacteria, viruses, fungi, and the immune response to them?? -Tom Kelly (Talk) 22:15, 12 January 2007 (CST)
forgot parasites. -Tom Kelly (Talk) 19:50, 13 January 2007 (CST)
I have replied to this in the biology forum as follows:

'I think this is exactly wrong. We are trying to produce a well-edited version, one that will be obviously well-edited. This means accuracy, bt it also means copyediting. There is nothing that gives the appearance of amateurism faster than inconsistence and error in style, punctuation, and detail. (well, spelling mistakes are even worse, but I think the article has been checked for this.)' To say, 'let's do a haphazard job, and hope people will make corrections,' is one of the factors that has done in the reputation of Wkipedia DavidGoodman 02:42, 13 January 2007 (CST) (heading interruption to comment)


The micrograph of sperm cells does not have a scale or a magnification factor. I apologize for not having noticed it before. This one I consider a major error. DavidGoodman 02:42, 13 January 2007 (CST)

Ive calculated magnif as 150x and added the texct to the legend David Tribe 21:57, 23 January 2007 (CST) Better 125x David Tribe 22:25, 26 January 2007 (CST)


Microbiology is not listed in Biology today a survey of the science of life section of this article

I listed it in the draft page because I think microbiology is a major subfield of biology. In studying microbiology, one usually studies bacteriology, virology, parasitology, mycology, and then in doing so you learn about virulence factors, host response, immunology, inflammation, pathology, etc.

I knew immunology would probably be controversial to have listed in such a short segment, although I think hematology and immunology and clinical immunology are fascinating aspects of Life, and the science of life and they deserve recognition somewhere.

I did not foresee virology being controversial but not understand the argument is "are viruses alive?" I'd rather not get in to that argument and just list them as "a major part of life," but that is just me. I do not foresee anyone solving the question if virology should be listed as a biological science in the near future and would vote on just removing it from the list, but then linking it somewhere else in the article (!!!!).

I don't like the format of my edit and was looking for advice - that's why I've been trying to get editors attention.

I don't like the wording exactly either - I think subgroup sounds funny - but again, I was just putting this out there as a criticism to the incompleteness of the list and trying to add some things to maybe improve it. It's just a minor edit but I think mainly, getting microbiology on the list is essential and getting some more sub-specialties in biology listed is also essential. -Tom Kelly (Talk) 00:17, 15 January 2007 (CST)

Forum post on minor edits to approved articles,421.msg3264.html#msg3264

haematology , hematology

I'd like to see hematology added to the list. thoughts?? -Tom Kelly (Talk) 22:01, 16 January 2007 (CST)

How do I edit the box at the bottom of the article? -Tom Kelly (Talk) 21:48, 17 January 2007 (CST)
It's a template. Apparently, it's Template:Biology-footer. Go to that page, click edit, and go to town. Note that you may need to re-edit this draft page to make the display on the page change. --ZachPruckowski 21:57, 17 January 2007 (CST)

I'm tending towards Hematology being a Health Science topic and maybe its covered by the Links at the top? David Tribe 19:13, 24 January 2007 (CST)

ok -Tom Kelly (Talk) 19:21, 24 January 2007 (CST)

I guess, does it take away from the article being there? -Tom Kelly (Talk) 19:22, 24 January 2007 (CST)

David, I don't disagree (aka agree) with the removal of heme from this general topic article and understand it fits in a different niche, however, I would argue (as a fun way of joking :)) that pathogy is not a word - i believe you meant pathology, and if so, Heme is a lot more than just a specialty of pathology-Tom Kelly (Talk) 22:09, 24 January 2007 (CST)

lol, i mis-spelled the description of my joke!! pathogeny, haha -Tom Kelly (Talk) 22:12, 24 January 2007 (CST)

Gee. I was interupted by students for an hour mid edit and now my typing clumsyness is there for all to see Grrrr.Have to go hom,e now and continue work there.David Tribe 22:30, 24 January 2007 (CST)

Just suggest minimising redlinks - especially overt links to articles that don't exist...Gareth Leng 04:26, 25 January 2007 (CST)

I think red links are fine. Larry thinks blank pages will encourage people to write more anyway - he might be right. -Tom Kelly (Talk) 21:36, 25 January 2007 (CST)

Consider for approval added paragraph at end of section "The Continuing Story"

I added paragraph at end of section "The Continuing Story" designed to expand the thoughts in the preceding paragraph.

I think that it is not an improvement, too technical, writing needs a lot of work. Nancy Sculerati MD 16:06, 25 January 2007 (CST)

I tried to merge it into to what was already there. See what you think. Chris Day (Talk) 16:14, 25 January 2007 (CST)

I played with it some, and I think it has potential. It needs polishing, and a great last line.Nancy Sculerati MD 16:52, 25 January 2007 (CST)

Version 1.2possibly near?

Also narrowing the red link categories in History of biology, as Gareth proposes, has the added advantage of focussing effort by others on the more general History of biology, field first,ahead of any History subfields, and I propose that's good strategy.

I support the more polished mention of systems biology and an editor such as Nancy slapping another Approval Template to generate version V1.2. I can efficiently handle the final approval of an existing approved article mechanics. I've had practice now 17:15, David Tribe 17:17, 25 January 2007 (CST)

David, I've done the best I can. Could you take over now, please? Thank you, Nancy Sculerati MD 18:15, 25 January 2007 (CST)

I just made some more edits to help the flow. See what you think. Chris Day (Talk) 23:08, 25 January 2007 (CST)
seem good to me, Ill scoop them into V 1.2 David Tribe 01:04, 26 January 2007 (CST)

Looking at the comments of the anonymous reviewer, I think they deserve consideration. I've adjusted the Einstein mention. The sentence below caught my eye as needing redrafting as it's a bit clumsy but my brain's not working fast enough to redraft it... "The development of biology has drawn on many more topics, and a much larger geographical area than referred to here, but the science of biology has had a continuous thread through the centuries that began with the ancient Greek philosophers, and has generally followed the winding pattern of advancement presented here."Gareth Leng 08:26, 26 January 2007 (CST)

Just how did we let that through? Ill look at when my brain is alive too David Tribe 09:03, 26 January 2007 (CST)

Had a go, perhaps not good, and made some adjustments in note of the comments of Zachs reiewer. This sentence I've also cut: "That amorphous material that Harvey could not fathom as the progenitor of organs might have seemed to him to be of a wholly different nature had he the advantage of magnification." I thought it was hard to digest and did not really add anything. Please revert anything I've done without hesitation if you disagree.Gareth Leng 09:08, 26 January 2007 (CST)

I'd like to sign off as an editor/author here. I have read and changed this article so many times I think I have developed an allergy to it! Please continue without me. Nancy Sculerati MD 09:14, 26 January 2007 (CST)

I havnt been exposed to the heavy dose that Nancy's taken on so heroically, and can tolerate more.

"Greek philosophers, and since then has advanced over the centuries in a winding pattern to embrace a multitude of topics."

? through different avenues, maybe. Hmmm.

I think youve captured some extra value in several places Gareth. David Tribe 09:34, 26 January 2007 (CST)

Montage updated to individual pictures

I just discovered that the sizing option for pictures is now functional. i changed the montage to make it individual pictures that are now clickable. I will write a blurb for each picture in the future. This montage is different to the other one. It is very easy to switch pictures in and out, so other, better, pictures can be used. We can have fewer pictures too. See here for more options. Chris Day (Talk) 11:04, 26 January 2007 (CST)

I just checked the montage on a different computer (sun with firefox browser). In that environment there are inconsitent white gaps between some of the individual pictures, whereas on my MAC running safari they are all tightly aligned. What do other people see? It might be impossible to do this montage in a way that is good for all browsers. although I hope not since I think the clickable picture feature is useful. Chris Day (Talk) 13:34, 26 January 2007 (CST)
YES with Firefox on Windows XP I see gaps. Well have to revert to premontage. But worse, They are fixed now on approved, but changing primary images ruins the approved version (of the other figures ). I used my Sysop status to do emergency repairs so DO NOT please change them back Chris David Tribe 22:31, 26 January 2007 (CST)

Update: after a discussion with Zach on my talk page i think this montage should be one jpg. We can make it clickable in the future using ImageMap technology. For a cool example of ImageMap in action see here. This would also be a very powerful tool for metabolic diagrams and such. Or imagine a picture of a cell where you can click on the different organelles. The potential seems huge. For now, let's go with the jpg in combination with a link to a gallery. Then we don't have to worry about the compatability issues as browsers get updated in the future. Chris Day (Talk) 13:01, 30 January 2007 (CST)

Revision status

I just noted something in the history of theis draft that may have been there for a long time. There is a classification for revision status written as follows; Revision status: N=normal A=approved. To the left of each saved version is a N. This will be a great feature for quickly identifying the last approved version for comaprsion with the most recent draft. However, scrolling through all the version I do not see any with an A, and by my calculation there should be at least two. What is the procedure for getting a version tagged with the A when the sysop finally cut and pastes a draft version to the main article? Chris Day (Talk) 12:55, 26 January 2007 (CST)

Yes indeed, I noticed that too. See the non draft version Biology though - *its history log*. I suggest that we keep links to the souce files in the talk section there. The history log there automatically accumulated A notation so it is natural to exploit that. Also is used space effectively. i.e.use the TOP page (non draft extension) for logging identity of approved A files and the draft for editing progress of revision. What do you think Chris D? David Tribe 20:13, 26 January 2007 (CST

Sorry to be slow getting back to this David. I guess my major concern here is to be able to compare the most recent draft with the last approved version, taking advantage of the comparison technology available here, i.e. the Compare selected versions option at the top of the draft history page. It would be great to be able to scroll down the page and select the radio button for the version that was copied over to the approved article page. If there was an A to distinguish that version it would make it a lot easier.
I see the A you are talking about in the biology article history, but aren't all these versions approved? I thought that was the point of the separating out the draft version. I understand that you made a few copy edits but nothing that would overide any approved version.
What I am trying to propose, and I'm not sure this has come across, it that what ever Larry did on that edit in the biology article history to make it an A instead of a N needs to be done each time a version from the draft page is approved. Does this make sense? I might start a seperate thread on this in the forum since it is a more general point than somethinjg specific to the biology or biology/draft articles. Chris Day (Talk) 17:28, 28 January 2007 (CST)
I dont know all the answers here Chris. Ill have to think and study about it but I need to go now. It would indeed be useful to air it on the forum. The appearance of the A seems to be by some high sysop permission and tool Larry and others have, possibley similar to standard disclaimer removal, but I'm guessing. We need to understand it better to be able to use it.David Tribe 18:24, 28 January 2007 (CST)
David, I'll take this to the forums and phrase it in the context of a more general issue. Chris Day (Talk) 02:46, 29 January 2007 (CST)
Forum thread can be found here:,499.0.html Chris Day (Talk) 12:41, 30 January 2007 (CST)

Stubs for red links

I've been looking at this article as a sort of map for the Biology workgroup, I would like to generate some reasonable stub forms of articles for major subfields in biology that are "red". I hope these can be seeds for us to all make grow. I know that Health science is a CZ Live article, and I keep failing at piping the link. Could you please fix it? Thanks, Nancy Nancy Sculerati MD 21:14, 26 January 2007 (CST)

I have reverted the edit by Gareth referred to. Please let me know is I have done it badly. It enabled me to see the AntoniE that need fixing too David Tribe 22:22, 26 January 2007 (CST)

Ive had that trouble before . I eventually found that the software is kind about the initiasl cap but cant understand internal caps eg Health Sciences vs Health sciences. Gosh itsa stuupid. Doesnt like singular either. We need to create a few redirect pages too. David Tribe 21:36, 26 January 2007 (CST) All authors and editors who take initiatives on figs and tables READ WARNING at top! David Tribe 21:37, 26 January 2007 (CST)

Another minor point: The point about Harvey and the microscope was that his failure to grasp that the early contents of the fertile womb were continuous with the macroscopic contents was the technology- the lack of a microscope. That's why that line you took out was there. I think you should re-write it and put it back. It was a link in the theme. Nancy Sculerati MD 21:52, 26 January 2007 (CST)

deletion reverted David Tribe 22:27, 26 January 2007 (CST)

Restoring NS text, Gareth, with sentance break in bold:

This article explores just a few selected themes; those themes center on the origin of life (both 'life on earth' and the creation of a new infant) and are followed through the centuries from ancient Greece to the present day. It is apparent that a philosophy of critical thinking, investigative methods that rely on empirical evidence, and the availability of technological tools have, together, accounted for how these ideas have changed. The development of biology has drawn on many more topics, and a much larger geographical area than referred to here. But the science of biology has a continuous thread through the centuries that began with the ancient Greek philosophers, and has generally followed the winding pattern of advancement presented here.

Im starting to know how you feel Nancy. David Tribe 23:01, 26 January 2007 (CST) Still need to revert early montage David Tribe 23:03, 26 January 2007 (CST)

That whole bit about the "This article explores just a few selected themes..." was a reply to several criticisms bemoaning the fact that ALL of biology was not covered through ALL time and the entire world. I finally decided to sort of define my domain explicitly, in a sort of mathematics sense, to shut them up (I do mean that with affection, believe it or not) as it was getting ridiculous. Do with it what you want.Nancy Sculerati MD 23:07, 26 January 2007 (CST) But it might be better: This article explores just a few selected themes; those themes center on the origin of life (both 'life on earth' and the creation of a new infant) and are followed through the centuries from ancient Greece to the present day. It is apparent that a philosophy of critical thinking, investigative methods that rely on empirical evidence, and the availability of technological tools have, together, accounted for how these ideas have changed. The development of biology has drawn on many more topics, and a much larger geographical area than referred to in this article. However, the science of biology has had a continuous thread through the centuries that began with the ancient Greek philosophers, and has generally followed the winding pattern of advancement presented here. OH NO_I'm breaking out in a rash....gotta go! Nancy Sculerati MD 23:39, 26 January 2007 (CST)

Version 1.2 actioned

Now I'm breaking out in a rash.;0)

I've just actioned creation of version 1.2, before coming here to discover more commentary to address. I believe I have reversed two changes made by Gareth if I recall correctly to very close to the previous original, but with some smal genuflection to the point of the criicism.

I think we've gotta all call a halt to Biology revision for a while, with the possible exception of a better montage, which I regard as a non-contentious minor change where Chris' valiant efforts have been already vetted but still are a risk due to browser variation generating ugliness.

Let's get on with other stuff. I learn't one new fact: Imam is the standard spelling of the Islamic leader. Plus I learn't a lot about how ethical processes and having an editorial 'leader' working constructively with real name colleagues is very important David Tribe 01:19, 27 January 2007 (CST)

Actually, you learned about Imam in Novemeber ;) , not sure how Iman got back in though. Chris Day (Talk) 01:16, 29 January 2007 (CST)

APPROVED Version 1.2

For the future or for subpages

Anthony.Sebastian (Talk) 22:09, 29 January 2007 (CST):
David: Regarding the "mystery of consciousness": An interest of mine for decades, starting when I read: Jaynes J. (1976) The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co. I have in hand advanced drafts of three papers I plan to submit to the Journal of Consciousness Studies, someday, of course, Multiverse willing. I’ve had several posters accepted for the biennial Tucson conference "Toward a Science of Consciousness", the abstracts of two of which you can find at If interested, click there on 'documents' and look for files entitled:
  • Consciousness Made ‘Easy’ - The Perspective of a Lay Enthusiast.rtf
  • Defining 'Experience' As Prerequisite To Explaining 'Conscious Experience' [post conference revision].rtf
I’d love to start a draft on 'conscious experience' for CZ, but I’d have to give up my academic life first. I know the players in the (controversial) field fairly well, but I can’t think of anyone who would qualify as 'non-POV'. Will give further thought to whom we might try to recruit.
You have thoughts? --Anthony.Sebastian (Talk) 22:09, 29 January 2007 (CST)


according to my knowledge it was anthonie van leeuwenhoek who invented a microscope, or better was able to use a tiny lens to use AS a microscope. The first time thtat ever happened. That is why that fact made him to the Dutch (yes I am Dutch :) ) the inventor of the microscope. Others specifically in the UK and of the Royal Society invited him to show his invention. Like microsoft nowadays it was soon copied and improved. Robert Tito 23:42, 29 January 2007 (CST)

My memory for the details fails me (like so much I once counted on!) - and so I will have to look it up. No, he was not, as per established sources (which I will find -give me a moment!)[or two]) the "inventor", what was called a microscope was around and used in the textile trade to examine cloth. He made some kind of revolutionary improvement to it- and used it to look at, more or less, everything. In November (I think) I worked on his biography as a CZ Live article. It's in there-along with the references. By the way- he was much more impressive than simply an inventor of one thing, I think he's been "dwindled" by happenstance and history from the status he should have- meaning, I became a fan. Nancy Sculerati MD 05:59, 30 January 2007 (CST)

Agree with Nancy here, he did not invent the microscope but improved it to a point such that it had a huge impact on biology. Robert Hooke was using microscopes to look at cells, although dead, before Anthonie van Leeuwenhoek but his magnification was only about 30 times. Leeuwenhoek made microscopes that could magnify up to 300 times and was the first to see living cells. Chris Day (Talk) 12:33, 30 January 2007 (CST)
Leeuwenhoek did not invent the microscope as such yet he was the first to use it as a science instrument, to study living organisms. His lenses did magnify up to 500 times. It took until 1800 for multi lens microscope could match that magnification. So inventor of the scientific microscope heis. Lenses in general were present - but not perfect for scientific purposes. Robert Tito 13:13, 30 January 2007 (CST)
Certainly you could credit him with the discovery of the first effective scientific microscope. It all depends on how you define scientific; ~30X or ~300X. Maybe scientific is casually defined as the first instrument capable of seeing living organisms. But is that even true? Much of this comes down to what van Leeuwenhoek chose to look at as much as how good his intsrtument was. I'm not trying to take anything away from van Leeuwenhoek his work speaks for itself and he was a true giant in biology. The living organisms in combination with sublime optics is the key here. Chris Day (Talk) 13:26, 30 January 2007 (CST)

Two column refs

David , i like the two column refs. Interestingly i can't see it using MAC with mozilla or safari. Chris Day (Talk) 12:53, 30 January 2007 (CST)

Might be a CSS issue on the Mediawiki end. I have the same problem. -- ZachPruckowski 13:16, 30 January 2007 (CST)
This issue partly resolved with suggestion supplied by Zach? (memiory right?) elsewhere David Tribe 20:20, 11 February 2007 (CST)

APPROVED Version 1.2.1

Zebra finch wrong?

Just a note the zebra finch is not an island specialist, as the text implies, but a continental generalist. Should be removed. --Michael Johnson 18:23, 4 February 2007 (CST)

It's really only there because it's a great picture of a bird with a specialized beak. Open call for submission a great photo (that is licensed such that we can use it) of one of the species of birds that Darwin actually observed in drawing his conclusions. I think we'd all agree that photo would be optimal. Nancy Sculerati MD 19:28, 10 February 2007 (CST)

The problem is that the Zebra Finch is an arid zone generalist, adapted to eat whatever is available. It's beak might be regarded as "typical". The point about Darwin's finches is that their beaks differed so much from a typical finch that Darwin did not identify them as such, and considered them to be members of different families. It was Gould who identified them as finches when mounting the birds back in England. If you wanted to include examples of birds from several different families to compare beaks, that might be useful. But it would not have anything to do with Darwin. As the photo and caption stands it is misleading. --Michael Johnson 15:38, 11 February 2007 (CST)

It is not the best illustration, agreed. Can you help us find a better one? We can be sure to review it before including the picture in another approved addition, and thanks. Nancy Sculerati MD 15:53, 11 February 2007 (CST) .

No unfortunately I do not have access to an image of Darwins finches, although there is one on Wikipedia, so they are around. I suppose it doesn't matter much in that this is not on public view, but it is something that anyone with any knowedge of the Estrildidae would have a giggle about. OTOH I guess the general public wouldn't know the difference. BTW shouldn't there be a policy that any image of an animal, at least in the context of a scientific article, identify the species? --Michael Johnson 17:38, 11 February 2007 (CST)

So, what are you suggesting? Just drop the photo altogther or change the caption to say something about a non-specialist beak? Can you devise a better caption?Nancy Sculerati MD 18:25, 11 February 2007 (CST)

I'd just delete it until you get a better image. To be frank, you could have used a picture of any bird at all instead of the zebra finch, they would have been just about as relevent (or rather, not). After all the whole point of the section is that it is talking about evolution, not finches. --Michael Johnson 19:12, 11 February 2007 (CST)

Einstein issue rears its 666 head again

David Tribe 20:20, 11 February 2007 (CST) thinks he can write a useful sentence to develop response to [an] issue [raised by] a PHILOSOPH on the forums. With various other issue raised David Tribe senses its time for another approval. Intends to pu a new approval tag up with a 7 day deadline to push through these revisions.

Please work on DNA. We have whole articles that are at least as important that are not in good shape. We have whole articles that are not even written. Nancy Sculerati MD 21:49, 11 February 2007 (CST)

Anatomy and Morphology discussion from the archive since it is still ongoing


In reference to the following section:

"Some fields of biology focus on living organisms and their interactions within a certain realm of the earth, as in marine biology; others focus on particular aspects of living organisms, like their structure (anatomy) or function (physiology). Studies of animals form the field of zoology, whereas the study of plants is called botany. Medicine and the health sciences apply biology to understanding disease and to improving health."

I would like to replace the word anatomy with morphology, which refers particularly to structure as it applies to both plants and animals, while the term anatomy really applies more to animals and humans in particular; the term zootomy usually reserved for lower animals. I am working on the human skeletal system and believe a more natural order for the flow from biology to the human skeletal system would be: biology > morphology > anatomy > human anatomy > systems of the human body > human skeletal system.

I quote from the Encyclopaedia Britannica: morphology " in biology, the study of the size, shape, and structure of animals, plants, and microorganisms and of the relationships of the parts comprising them. The term refers to the general aspects of biological form and arrangement of the parts of a plant or an animal. The term anatomy also refers to the study of biological structure but usually suggests study of the details of either gross or microscopic structure. In practice, however, the two terms are used almost synonymously.

Typically, morphology is contrasted with physiology, which deals with studies of the functions of organisms and their parts; function and structure are so closely interrelated, however, that their separation is somewhat artificial. Morphologists were originally concerned with the bones, muscles, blood vessels, and nerves comprising the bodies of animals and the roots, stems, leaves, and flower parts comprising the bodies of higher plants. The development of the light microscope made possible the examination of some structural details of individual tissues and single cells; the development of the electron microscope and of methods for preparing ultrathin sections of tissues created an entirely new aspect of morphology—that involving the detailed structure of cells. Electron microscopy has gradually revealed the amazing complexity of the many structures comprising the cells of plants and animals. Other physical techniques have permitted biologists to investigate the morphology of complex molecules such as hemoglobin, the gas-carrying protein of blood, and deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), of which most genes are composed. Thus, morphology encompasses the study of biological structures over a tremendous range of sizes, from the macroscopic to the molecular.

A thorough knowledge of structure (morphology) is of fundamental importance to the physician, to the veterinarian, and to the plant pathologist, all of whom are concerned with the kinds and causes of the structural changes that result from specific diseases. "


anatomy " a field in the biological sciences concerned with the identification and description of the body structures of living things. Gross anatomy involves the study of major body structures by dissection and observation and in its narrowest sense is concerned only with the human body. “Gross anatomy” customarily refers to the study of those body structures large enough to be examined without the help of magnifying devices, while microscopic anatomy is concerned with the study of structural units small enough to be seen only with a light microscope. Dissection is basic to all anatomical research. The earliest record of its use was made by the Greeks, and Theophrastus called dissection “anatomy,” from ana temnein, meaning “to cut up.” "

While I know the Encyclopaedia Britannica, dances around a bit on the distinction between morphology and anatomy, they do stress that morphology is often contrasted with physiology, which is what you are doing on the Biology page. From reading quite a few references it has become apparent to me that, while anatomy once had a broader sense, almost the same as morphology, over time it has come to refer more and more to the morphology of animals and mammals in particular, especially man. I can supply a large number of references, if you wish but I didn't want to overwhelm your discussion page.

I ask this because without the change morphology would be an orphan and, I hope you agree, it is the more general of the two terms, morphology and anatomy. I'm sure you agree that in setting up this online encyclopedia it is important to go always from the general to the particular so that viewers can burrow down in a branchlike structure as far as they wish. I'll admit that sometimes the choices are hard.

Even if you feel that "anatomy" is not a subset of "morphology" and that they are true equals, then you must say "anatomy or morphology" instead of just "anatomy".

You can let me know what you think by posting to the anatomy discussion page.

Thanks, David Hume.

I don't have time to write too much now but I will comment that anatomy of plants is a whole subject in its own right. Distinct from morphology too. So I would disagree that the term is more relevant to animal biology. Chris Day (Talk) 11:21, 17 February 2007 (CST)


I guess I'd hazard that it should be form (anatomy) or structure (morphology). I guess for the level that this article is written it would be appropriate to use "form (anatomy)" as these are more clearly understood by lay readers in their proper sense. I see the point though, it's a sound one - but let's think of the reader first. On balance I'd say that Anatomy should stay. Make any change on the draft but lets not revisit approval until substantial changes have accrued. In the meantime I think there are articles that are approaching approval that deserve closer attention than this one, for now.

Gareth Leng 03:31, 20 February 2007 (CST)


MORPHOLOGY I. Simple uses.

1. Biol. The branch of biology that deals with the form of living organisms and their parts, and the relationships between their structures. Formerly: spec. the comparison of the forms of organisms and their parts in order to identify homologous structures (cf. quots. 1853, 1859, 1872).

1828 R. KNOX tr. H. Cloquet Syst. Human Anat. 2 Descriptive itself capable of being divided into the Particular Anatomy of Organs, or Morphology, and the Anatomy of Regions, or Topographical Anatomy, if we may use the expression.
1853 T. H. HUXLEY in Philos. Trans. Royal Soc. 143 29 The morphology of the Cephalous Mollusca is a subject which has been greatly neglected. No Savigny has determined the homologies of their different organs, and so furnished the only scientific basis for anatomical and zoological nomenclature.
1859 J. R. GREENE Man. Animal Kingdom: Protozoa Introd. 17 By some the word ‘morphology’ is employed in a restricted sense, to signify the study of homologous organs.
1872 R. G. LATHAM Dict. Eng. Lang., Morphology, doctrine of the fundamental identity of the parts constituting the flower..and fruit..with the leaf.
1904 W. L. H. DUCKWORTH Morphol. & Anthropol. ii. 14 This application of the principles of Morphology to the special case of Man constitutes the essence of Physical Anthropology.
1946 A. NELSON Princ. Agric. Bot. iii. 20 In both morphology and anatomy the relationships in space of the several parts..are important.
1992 P. J. BOWLER Fontana Hist. Environmental Sci. (BNC) 340 Morphology was a laboratory-based subject that did not encourage detailed study of how animals adapted to their local environment.

2. orig. and chiefly Science. Shape, form, external structure or arrangement, esp. as an object of study or classification. Also: a particular shape, form, or external structure, esp. of (a part of) an organism, landform, etc.

1844 Philos. Trans. Royal Soc. 134 303 The morphology of the thyroid gland.
1894 Jrnl. Physiol. 17 81 (heading) The morphology and distribution of the wandering cells of Mammalia.
1895 N. STORY-MASKELYNE (title) Crystallography: a treatise on the morphology of crystals.
1921 Geogr. Rev. 11 155 (heading) Morphology of the Altai Mountains.
1937 Rep. Brit. Assoc. Advancem. Sci. 373 (heading) A comparative study of the morphology of the North Downs and the Chiltern Hills. 1950 Jrnl. Gen. Physiol. 33 651 Two separate lines of approach..were required: a study of the functional behavior of the [nerve] fibers, and a study of their morphology.
1954 M. BERESFORD Lost Villages 23 In the study of village opportunity of seeing a medieval village plan without any of the accretions of later building.
1964 R. C. EVANS Introd. Crystal Chem. (ed. 2) xi. 184 Before the discovery of X-ray diffraction, crystals could be classified only on the basis of morphology, and in terms of their symmetry were assigned to one or other of the thirty-two classes.
1965 E. GURR Rational Use of Dyes in Biol. I. 107 We can refer to the shape and/or size of a molecule as its morphology.
1971 W. A. PRYOR in R. E. Carver Procedures Sedimentary Petrol. vii. 142 Quantitative analysis of grain morphology requires measurement of particle radii, diameters, and lengths.
1990 Protein Engin. 4 23/1 Amphioxus, an invertebrate animal with the morphology of a fish.


I. The process, subjects, and products of dissection of the body.

1. The artificial separation of the different parts of a human body or animal (or more generally of any organized body), in order to discover their position, structure, and economy; dissection.

1541 R. COPLAND Guydon's Quest. Cyrurg., Anathomy is called ryght dyuysyon of membres done for certayne knowleges.
1543 TRAHERON Vigo's Chirurg. (1586) 430 Anatomie..signifieth the cutting up of a mans bodie, or of some other thing.
1667 MARVELL Corr. 203 Wks. 1872 II. 403 As if a man should dissect his own body, and read the anatomy lecture.
1688 J. CLAYTON in Phil. Trans. XVII. 990 Dr. Moulin and my self..made our Anatomies together..we shew'd to the Royal Society, that all Flat-bill'd Birds..had three Pair of Nerves.
1712 ADDISON Spect. No. 275 1 Curious observations which he had lately made in an anatomy of an human body.

b. with quick, live: Vivisection. Obs.

1651 N. BIGGS New Dispens. Pref. 7 Where have we constant reading upon either quick or dead Anatomies?
1651 Life of Father Sarpi (1676) 16 He had formerly cut in pieces a number of living Creatures with his own hands to make Anatomies.
1668 CULPEPPER & COLE tr. Bartholinus' Anat. II. vi. 101 In Live Anatomies we can hardly perceive that the one is hotter then the other.

2. concr. a. A body (or part of one) anatomized or dissected, so as to show the position and structure of the organs. Hence b. A body or ‘subject’ for dissection. Obs.

1540 T. RAYNALDE Birth of Mankinde (1634) Prol. 3 As though yee were present at the cutting open of Anatomy of a dead woman.
1598 B. JONSON Every Man in his Humour IV. vi, They must ha' dissected, and made an Anatomie o' me. 1602 DEKKER Satirom. 197 Carving my poore labours, Like an Anotomy.
1611 TOURNEUR Ath. Trag. V. ii. 146 His body when 'tis dead For an Anatomie.
1611 DONNE in Coryat Crudities, Worst malefactors..Doe publique good cut in Anatomies.
1691 WOOD Ath. Oxon. II/610 He intended to have her made an Anatomy.
1751 CHAMBERS Cycl., Anatomy is sometimes used to denote the subject to be anatomized.

3. A model of the body, showing the parts discovered in dissection.

1727-51 CHAMBERS Cycl. s.v., An human anatomy in plaster of Paris, representing a man standing upright, with his skin flea'd off. 1753 Cycl. Supp., Who has not seen the waxwork Anatomy?

It seems 'morphology' more for form; 'anatomy' more for details of structure. But still iffy. Anthony.Sebastian (Talk) 14:59, 20 February 2007 (CST)

The problem, as I see it, is that anatomy and morphology are both different types of biological structure. The most accurate way to write the sentence is:
"others focus on particular aspects of living organisms, like their structure (anatomy and morphology) or function (physiology)."
Does this suit everyone? Chris Day (Talk) 15:17, 20 February 2007 (CST)
It's certainly inclusive! :-) But it does not suit me- the truth is that anatomy and morphology are broadly used as synonyms by biologists. Like crimson and scarlet, it is possible to find specific references that distinguish them, but that is rather misleading. All I can say is that I have taught college level biology courses in a university and given anatomy lectures in a medical school, and I do not agree that one is recognized as a subset of the other, or that both need to be mentioned. I do feel that the narrative writing should be crisp and engaging, and that to have to add in and morphology is not an improvement. Do we even have two different articles? David, I think your interest is great and I would be pleased to write some bone articles with you- but the Encyclopedia Brittanica just is not an authoratative source for this stuff. The hierarchy you propose here and in anatomy is not one that I agree with. Perhaps you could start an article on a favorite bone- how about: human skull- I can help you there! ;-) Nancy Nancy Sculerati MD 15:28, 20 February 2007 (CST)
addendum: I see that there is an anatomy and a distinct morphology article- basically both written by David Hume, and both written to support his view. Perhaps the other biology editors can look them over and comment/edit. I do not want to be confrontational, but I do believe that we cannot sacrifice truth to politeness. As we all know, I am often wrong-but never in doubt! Still, I do not believe that these articles are accurate as written. Nancy Sculerati MD 15:33, 20 February 2007 (CST)
Botanists do not use them as synonyms, I can't speak for zoologists or the medical profession. Certainly i would not regard one as a subset of the other. Chris Day (Talk) 15:43, 20 February 2007 (CST)

APPROVED Version 1.3

Anatomy morphology continued


  • One can speak of the morphology of a protein molecule--its size and shape--without speaking of its amino acid sequence. In fact, knowing the amino acid sequence gives no clue to its shape, i.e., its morphology. If one spoke of the protein's anatomy, one would need to speak of its amino acid sequence. If it had definable components, like polyphenol and polysaccharide side-chains, one might anatomize it into its components and separately describe its morphology.
  • One can speak of the anatomy of a murder, but not of its morphology. If you did speak of its morphology, you might mean something like its modus operandi and compare that morphology with other murders with different anatomies.
  • The 1990 quote above from OED, "Amphioxus, an invertebrate animal with the morphology of a fish", suggests two biological entities could have the same morphology but different anatomies.

It does seem that each of the two words have certain domains of applicability all their own even if they share other domains. --Anthony.Sebastian (Talk) 18:48, 4 March 2007 (CST)

We seem to agree here Anthony. Chris Day (Talk) 12:47, 5 March 2007 (CST)
I cut my biology teeth on Darcy Wentworth-Thom(p)son's On Growth and Form. Form=morphology has a clear biological implications, but the point, I suppose, is how do we recognise this, or should we, and how to avoid confusion and clutter if we do ? David Tribe 14:41, 5 March 2007 (CST)
In the pre-molecular biology days there were two required courses in our department. One on 'plant anatomy', based on Katherine Esau's book. A second on 'plant morphology' based primarily on Don Kaplan's work. Now we have one course called 'plant structure' that teaches both. I believe as the world gets more molecular and subcellular the distinction between anatomy and morphology is being blurred in the same way as the two courses have merged. This is not new to biology. Epigenetic has a vey different meaning now to the Waddingtons original meaning. Is the modern usage wrong, or are we watching our scientific language evolve? Same could be said for the usage of gene over the years. Personally, I think the distinction is important. Chris Day (Talk) 14:50, 5 March 2007 (CST)
See Donald R. Kaplan’s legacy: influencing teaching and research, I hope this link works for you. Chris Day (Talk) 14:57, 5 March 2007 (CST)

________ Unfortunately the link above requires a sign-on.

At the very least morphology should be included in the "List of biology topics", as is clear from the following searches with Google, listing the obtained the numbers of hits beside each search:

  • +anatomy +plant 1,440,000
  • +anatomy +animal 4,220,000
  • +anatomy +human 34,600,000
  • +morphology +plant 1,330,000
  • +morphology +animal 1,620,000
  • +morphology +human 13,400,000

While the word morphology has about the same number of hits in relation to animals as it does with plants. Anatomy has far more hits with animals than plants, and humans winning by a large margin. These results align with the argument that the word anatomy is more likely to be used with animals and humans in particular.

It appears that the intent on the biology page is to contrast the study of form (morphology) with the study of function (physiology). On the other hand, the word anatomy by its very derivation implies cutting, i.e. dissection. This is why it can be argued that morphology is the more general term. It is the one used in comparing fossils and living organisms with each other. Anatomy is the dissection of an organism to reveal its form and structure at deeper levels. The morphology of a kidney can be described, but not until you've exposed it to view by means of anatomical dissection; although today other methods are also available allowing a virtual dissection like NMR, CT, etc.

There is no doubt that the words are often used interchangeably but, at the same time, there is a distinction, albeit a fine one.

Some references:

  • anatomy

The study of the structure of living organisms, especially of their internal parts by means of dissection and microscopical examination. Compare morphology . (From A Dictionary of Biology in Biological Sciences)

  • morphology

The study of the form and structure of organisms, especially their external form. Compare anatomy . (From A Dictionary of Biology in Biological Sciences)

  • morphology

The form and structure of individual organisms, as distinct from their anatomy (which involves dissection). Compare physiognomy . (From A Dictionary of Plant Sciences in Biological Sciences)

  • morphology n.

the branch of biology concerned with the forms and structures of living organisms. (From The Concise Oxford English Dictionary in English Dictionaries & Thesauruses)

  • morphology

the science dealing with the visible structures of organisms and the developmental and evolutionary history of these structures. (From A Dictionary of Genetics in Biological Sciences)

  • morphology

It is associated historically with zoology, where it was first developed into a separate branch of enquiry with works such as Abraham Trembley's Mémoires, pour servir à l'histoire d'un genre de polypes d'eau douce (1744), and is the branch of biology interested in the nature of anatomy in plants and animals, in particular the homologies, structures, and metamorphoses which govern or influence form.(O. H. Irvine "Morphology" The Oxford Companion to Western Art. Ed. Hugh Brigstocke. Oxford University Press, 2001.)

  • anatomy n. the study of the structure of living organisms. In medicine it refers to the study of the form and gross structure of the various parts of the human body. The term morphology is sometimes used synonymously with anatomy but it is usually used for comparative anatomy: the study of differences in form between species. See also cytology, histology, physiology.(Concise Medical Dictionary. Oxford University Press, 2002.)

The dictionary references above all come from the Oxford Reference Online, even so there are different points of view evident and many just give the same definition for both words.

Perhaps the best medical reference devoted to the topic, Gray's Anatomy, states:

  • "What is Anatomy?
    • The study of human anatomy, literally dissection, or the separation of the body into its parts..."

Here is an offering from one university indicating that they see anatomy as a branch of morphology:

  • The Department of Human Morphology offers undergraduate courses to students in the Faculty of Medicine and the School of Nursing,in addition to graduate courses in the graduate program leading to the MS and PhD degrees.Students applying to the graduate program should hold a bachelor of science degree or its equivalent. The department may ask for specific prerequisites in certain disciplines such as biology and chemistry as deemed necessary.
    • HUMR 207 Gross Anatomy 24.198;7 cr.
      • A regional dissection of the entire human body supplemented by embryology,clinical lectures,and discussions.The student is also introduced to radiographic anatomy based on various imaging modalities, in addition to computer-assisted instruction.Required of all medical students.
    • HUMR 209 Basic Histology 58.69;6 cr.
      • A study of the cell,tissues,and organs of the human body at the level of the light and electron microscopes,utilizing traditional and modern methodologies.Structure is related to basic composition and function with some clinical application.Required of all medical students.
    • HUMR 246 Human Morphology for Nurses 32.32;3 cr.
      • An introduction to basic gross anatomy and histology.Required of all nurses in the BS program.
    • HUMR 305 General Histology 30.33;3 cr.
      • A course that consists of the first half of Basic Histology,HUMR 209,covering basically cells and tissues. Open to graduate students outside the department.
    • HUMR 307 Gross Anatomy
      • The same as HUMR 207.Offered to graduate students in the department.
    • HUMR 308 A Neuroanatomy 28.39;3 cr.
      • The neuroanatomy component of Neuroscience,IDTH 208.Offered to graduate students.
    • HUMR 309 Basic Histology 58.69;6 cr.
      • Similar to HUMR 209.Offered to all graduate students in the department.
    • HUMR 310 Methods in Morphology 0.64;2 cr.,
      • A guided laboratory course in methods used in the department as aids in morphologic and cell biology research.Open to graduate students.
    • HUMR 312 Anatomy Tutorial 0.64;2 cr.
      • A guided literature review of special research problems.

A Google search on "morphology university biology OR medicine OR anatomy" brings up 4,840,000 listings, some of which would make the word morphology even more inclusive:

"Book Description

  • Ecological morphology examines the relation between an animal's anatomy and physiology--its form and function--and how the animal has evolved in and can inhabit a particular environment. Within the past few years, research in this relatively new area has exploded. Ecological Morphology is a synthesis of major concepts and a demonstration of the ways in which this integrative approach can yield rich and surprising results.

Through this interdisciplinary study, scientists have been able to understand, for instance, how bat wing design affects habitat use and bat diet; how the size of a predator affects its ability to capture and eat certain prey; and how certain mosquitoes have evolved physiologically and morphologically to tolerate salt-water habitats. Ecological Morphology also covers the history of the field, the role of the comparative method in studying adaptation, and the use of data from modern organisms for understanding the ecology of fossil communities.

This book provides an overview of the achievements and potential of ecological morphology for all biologists and students interested in the way animal design, ecology, and evolution interact."

In summary, it seems reasonable to say the morphology is a more general term referring to the study of the structure or form of animals and plants; and also for making comparisons between homologous structures in different species. Anatomy is when you stick in the knife.

The distinction between morphology and anatomy is inherent in the etymology of words themselves:

  • μορφή (morphi) meaning "shape or form"
  • ανατομέ (anatome) meaning "dissection" arose from a sythesis of ανα (ana) meaning "up" or "back", and τέμνειν (temnein) to cut

It is unfortunate that words, like naughty children, won't behave and sit still. The use of the word anatomy all over the place in titles like "The Anatomy of Buzz", "The Anatomy of Interoperability", etc. has perverted the sense of the word. Even in medicine the distinction is often blurred. Because all medical students study morphology through anatomy, they tend to use the word anatomy as a catch all. Their focus,however, is narrower than that of a biologist.

The words are clearly in flux and neither interpretation can be considered wrong. It's like trying to argue that the construction "try and + infinitive" is nonsense, grammatically speaking, and that one should say "try + infinitive", when almost everyone will say "try and + infinitive" in all situations.

Yet, limiting the argument to meaning within the field of study being discussed, biology, rather than the more general uses of the words, the evidence above makes the case that anatomy falls under morphology, being merely one of the ways of studying morphology, as opposed to microscopy, etc. It is now left to the authors of this page to make up their minds and accept or reject the proposal for the hierarchy, biology > morphology > anatomy. David Hume 14:50, 10 March 2007 (CST)

For comparison

Editors and authors of this article may be interested in Wikipedia's history of biology, the contents of which mirror this article considerably. Myself and others have put a lot of effort into it recently, and into the problem of presenting such a huge topic in a balanced way, so it may spark your imagination even if you disagree with the way it's done. It takes more of a history perspective (limited especially by the available historiography) than a modern biology looking at its roots perspective, but we welcome any constructive criticisms.--Sage Ross 16:37, 24 April 2007 (CDT)

I like the idea of sharing ideas and quality control always benefits from extra eyes. But I think I can do without the wikipedia style agro. It's not conducive to enjoyable editing. Chris Day (talk) 17:49, 24 April 2007 (CDT)


On Constable hat:

Folks, I hate to have to knock on the door to disturb you with this, but we have a problem that we need to have someone work on fixing right away.

The beautiful picture of the little Zebra Finch Image:Young_zebra_finch.jpg is not used by permission of the copyright holder. This means one of two things needs to happen:

1. Someone needs to find a workable copyright-free image to replace it. Try one of these:

2. Actually, given that from among the above photos there is at least one of generally equal quality, there is no option #2. :-)

Make sure the image you select can be attributed to a real-named person. I did not check all of the above for that. You have to go into the flickr user's profile to see.

Stephen Ewen 11:58, 1 May 2007 (CDT)

Personally i think the article would be better without the finch, however, I don't understand the copyright rationale. This picture is from the PLOS journal. I was under the impression that their figures were all fair game? From the paper:
"Copyright : © 2005 Public Library of Science. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited." PLoS Biol. 2005 May; 3(5): e162.
That seems pretty explicit and the photo is properly cited as far as i can tell. Chris Day (talk) 12:13, 1 May 2007 (CDT)

True that the finch is not needed, but there is a way to use this great picture and make it relevant. The zebra finch is apparently the unmodified "unspecialized" beak, it's the one that the Darwin finch beaks are compared to, and there are some embrological studies that look at which point in development the switch occurs, and how it is carried out. I'll look for such pictures, which might nicely illustrate the concept of phenotypic changes brought about by natural selection. Nancy Sculerati 12:20, 1 May 2007 (CDT)

Okay, cool, that's all fine then! But how was anyone supposed to check that that work was under a CC license without the link to the source and that licensing info at the image page? As a non-biologist, I would have no clue that that journal is open content, and to all appearances, and without documentation, it looks very problematic. Could someone please add that licensing info to the image page? Thanks, Stephen Ewen 12:29, 1 May 2007 (CDT)
i guess it is generally known by biologists, so the actual license got neglected. I will add something. Chris Day (talk) 12:32, 1 May 2007 (CDT)

I added the copyright/licensing info. Sorry for the misunderstanding. I hope you can see it as very understandable misunderstanding! Stephen Ewen 14:13, 1 May 2007 (CDT)

Great , you're a star. I see your misunderstanding as very understandable. At least we know for the future. Chris Day (talk) 14:21, 1 May 2007 (CDT)

Migration to infoset

With the migration of the infoset to the subpages we need to consider a new approval for the biology article. We need to consider two things 1) loss of content from the biology article and 2) the quality/content of the subpages. In the following sections I have broken this down into the respective issues to try and focus the discussion. Chris Day (talk) 21:47, 6 July 2007 (CDT)

Loss of content

Are we happy with the movement of the material from the main article to the subpages?

Quality of subpages?

What do we need to do to get the subpages up to scratch? I have pasted in the description for each subpage (at least those relevant for biology) from CZ:Subpage Pilot. Along with one or two thoughts.

Related articles

  • Related Articles: creating an excellent list of subtopics, supertopics, and other related topics

Possibly too many links?


  • Bibliography: annotating and, if necessary, expanding the list of important published books and articles on the topic; link to online source (articles: abstracts, full-text; book: table of contents, reviews in respected sources, author info)

Is this a braod enough spectrum of general reading?


  • External links: expanding and annotating the list of Web links about the topic

Are these the best available and representative of what is available on the web?


  • Gallery: an image gallery

This is the only subpage that existed and so has already passed through the approval process. However, do the labels need to be improved? Should other images be included?

I think galleries should be about more than just pictures. A picture of a feather with a caption saying only "feather" is well, less than it might be. There should be more info describing each image. I think galleries should be rather self-contained. Onslow_Beach/Gallery does this, to a degree, especially on some of the images toward the bottom.  —Stephen Ewen (Talk) 22:05, 6 July 2007 (CDT)


  • Timelines: one or more pages giving a timeline about some aspect of the topic

This is currently blank but should at least be a synopsis of the events mentioned in the article. Any other ideas for this section?


  • Tutorials: one or more pages that introduce a topic specifically for students; would be focused on more "practical" aspects of the topic, have more examples, and even perhaps some problems at the bottom of the page

I'm not quite sure of the content that might be useful for this section. May be we can think up some examples to use a model for this concept?

Thanks Chris

This is exactly the sort of analysis that I think we needed. However, I'm going to reply on the talk pages of the subpages. Each subpage has its own talk page, and I'm quite sure that if we do not use the talk pages of the subpages to discuss each subpage, we're going to end up with a very busy, and very confusing, article talk page. --Larry Sanger 22:41, 6 July 2007 (CDT)

No problem, but everyone has this page on their watch list, so intially, at least, I hope we will get everyones attention. But moving discussion to the relevant talk pages is good. I was already wrestling with how to break up the discussion, hence all the sub sections here. So to all watching this space, please put all the subpages on your watchlist. Chris Day (talk) 22:53, 6 July 2007 (CDT)
Good point Chris. I think that is something that should be automated because it will be annoying to have to click 5-10 more times to watchlist all of the subpages. Have you guys seen the collapsible templates? Would this not be another option to external links and see also and references? Tom Kelly 23:00, 6 July 2007 (CDT)

Please see Talk:Biology/Related for a whole passel of interesting issues, especially the suggestion that we invite people to create brief "definitions." --Larry Sanger 23:27, 6 July 2007 (CDT)

Loss of content

Chris asks: "What do we need to do to get the subpages up to scratch? I have pasted in the description for each subpage (at least those relevant for biology) from CZ:Subpage Pilot. Along with one or two thoughts."

I just wanted to underscore that I agree entirely that these subpages now look pretty shoddy. In fact, this points up something very interesting about having the information on the subpages: when you prise out one type of info, and put it on its own page, you won't accept content that is as poor as it would be as part of a larger page. In other words: by moving these end matter sections to subpages, I think we're going to have much better end matter. An odd result, perhaps, but welcome and, I might add, not entirely unforeseen! :-) --Larry Sanger 22:48, 6 July 2007 (CDT)

Chris asks: "Are we happy with the movement of the material from the main article to the subpages?"

This is a general question so appropriate to ask here. I'm very interested in what your answers to this might be, actually. My initial impression is: this is a tremendous improvement. The information is easier to find and more clearly and (will be) consistently labelled.

--Larry Sanger 22:48, 6 July 2007 (CDT)

While I don't think subpages are bad, I do like having all the content in the main article.
Tom Kelly 23:05, 6 July 2007 (CDT)

But it follows logically, Tom, that what we have to say about a topic is then limited to what fits (or is acceptable to put) on a single wiki page. We can say much more, and have better quality, if we prise out the information types & put them on their own (but closely interconnected) pages. --Larry Sanger 23:17, 6 July 2007 (CDT)

Why is length an issue? Printing? Who actually prints these days? Longer the better-- cntrl+f to get to the part you want to read. If you throw out the length variable then it is still logical to have subpages, but it is more logical to have both subpages and links in the article. Tom Kelly 17:12, 7 July 2007 (CDT)
Ok, printing is good for editing... but once the article is made to a approved quality -- longer is better and printing is less of a concern. Tom Kelly 17:13, 7 July 2007 (CDT)
I think we should have BOTH subpages for expanded information and references and external + internal links right in the article. Tom Kelly 17:14, 7 July 2007 (CDT)

In the end content should be for the readers, not the writers. Subpages are good, but content in an article that will get more "hits" than a subpage is more user friendly. Tom Kelly 17:15, 7 July 2007 (CDT)

How do you monitor workgroup recent changes with subpages? Will there be locked subpages? Tom Kelly 17:19, 7 July 2007 (CDT)

Mechanics of subpages re: approval and discussion

We are currently discussing format issues on the individual talk page of each subpage since there is a lot to resolve. In the long term, once this all settles down, I'm assuming that this talk page (Talk:Biology/Draft) will be the central location for all talk regarding this Biology infoset? You'll note that we had already redirected the Talk:Biology/Gallery talk page to this draft talk page. It seems to make sense to discuss content issues leading to approval of an infoset in one place, otherwise the discussion will become too fragmented.

Some thoughts on the approval process. Once approval has occurred will the whole infoset be protected? Will this mean we have to have draft pages for ALL these subpages? Will updates for one subpage that require reapproval be managed for that one specific subpage or will we always deal with the infoset as a complete unit? Personally, I prefer one centralized talk page and approvals that consider the whole infoset. Chris Day (talk) 16:26, 7 July 2007 (CDT)

Gallery template

Can some one with sysop access change the gallery template to the following please? {{Gallery header|group=biology}} Thanks Chris Day (talk) 02:01, 11 July 2007 (CDT)

Fabulous image is a fabulous photo, seems just too nice to not work into the gallery.  —Stephen Ewen (Talk) 12:34, 20 August 2007 (CDT)

APPROVED Version 1.4


I have attempted to correct an error in this article - anyone please chech that I have done so accurately?Gareth Leng 07:26, 3 January 2008 (CST)

Potential montage licensing issues

The lead-in montage of photos contains at least one photo that is licensed CC-by-SA, namely the butterfly, and at least one licensed under GFDL, namely the compound eye. I see two possible issues:

1) Is the combination of the photos into one image, montage2.jpg, considered a derivative work or a collection? If it's a derivative work, GFDL and CC-by-sa incompatibility is a problem.

2) The reader is given no clue that the photos are by someone other than ourselves until they click on the montage and then click on an individual image. Is that sufficient credit? --Warren Schudy 12:05, 5 January 2008 (CST)

I just looked at the cc-by-sa license for the butterfly and I think it's ok as far as that license is concerned. Warren Schudy 12:11, 5 January 2008 (CST)
I think the Gallery page might be considered as "title pages" for the individual images, so perhaps we need to give author names on that page for GFDL compliance? From the GFDL:

For works in formats which do not have any title page as such, "Title Page" means the text near the most prominent appearance of the work's title, preceding the beginning of the body of the text.

It looks like the GFDL has an "aggregate work" clause, so the montage appears not to be a derivative work by either license. Warren Schudy 12:23, 5 January 2008 (CST)
Both the compound eye and the butterfly are currently used in the putative Biology Week logo - what to do with these licensing issues? -- Daniel Mietchen 03:37, 26 June 2008 (CDT)
When I put together the montage, I was just grabbing a variety of images from wikicommons. The main problem, I think, is that the license may not allow alterations to the original images. That would be a deal breaker for making a montage. Chris Day 03:51, 26 June 2008 (CDT) (Germany makes yet another gloabl final!)


Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden at flickr

Possible replacement of introductory image

A draft has been made for an article to be submitted to PLoS Biology, explaining CZ and Biology Week. It will be accompanied by an image that may look like this or similar and could find reuse for the Biology article or CZ:Biology Workgroup logo. Please comment at CZ Talk:Biology Week/PLoS. Thanks! Daniel Mietchen 00:50, 17 July 2008 (CDT)

Can I add stuff to this article? Or is this article "fixed" as is

Wondering. Like to add link to Panton Principles.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 02:51, 8 April 2010 (UTC)

Hi Thomas, add it to the draft version. If it's just a copy edit, ask a constable and they may make the change in the main article. If it changes meaning in any way, then it's a content edit and needs an approval process to make it to the main article. D. Matt Innis 02:58, 8 April 2010 (UTC)
Hi thanks Matt. Does the draft version get picked up by the crawlers? And wondering what the PageRank score is of the draft version? The biology article is a "hot" one here at CZ, (PageRank = 4 I think) and based on what I'm learning about crawlers and SEO, I think it makes sense for the biology article to "share the wealth"; specifically, any other CZ articles that this article points to will probably get a bump up in terms of Google juice.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 03:02, 8 April 2010 (UTC)
Thanks. I added information. The draft article, along with the approved article, has a PageRank of 4. Not bad. --Thomas Wright Sulcer 03:13, 8 April 2010 (UTC)
I see your change. It's too complex to be considered a copy edit, so it will have to wait for an editorial process to add it to the article. So, are you saying that the draft article can be googled, too? D. Matt Innis 03:22, 8 April 2010 (UTC)
What I found out, by using This tool and putting the url of both the approved article, and the draft article, is that both approved and draft articles of "Biology" have great web exposure. This is one of CZ's hit articles -- great job btw -- and draws good traffic to our encyclopedia. Both approved and draft articles have a Google PageRank of 4 -- which is excellent for CZ. What I'm learning along with others here is that interlinking is a key to winning greater web exposure. I worked on an article called SEO which pointed me to this. What this means is that the biology article is, itself, a strong link -- other articles it points to, such as Panton Principles, may get a boost in PageRank, or what DM calls Google Juice if there is a wikilink on the Biology article (either draft or approved) pointing to the PP article. So no need to get editorial approval to move changes to the approved article -- I think it's fine on the draft article.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 03:30, 8 April 2010 (UTC)
Life PageRank =4/10 Anthony.Sebastian 03:50, 8 April 2010 (UTC)
Another excellent excellent article!--Thomas Wright Sulcer 04:08, 8 April 2010 (UTC)
I find the Panton Principles important, also for biology, but I do not think they should be mentioned in this article (so I took them out). I have, however, added some related information in the "Future of biology" section. --Daniel Mietchen 12:15, 8 April 2010 (UTC)
Sounds reasonable to me.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 12:28, 8 April 2010 (UTC)

A critique

There's a critique of this article at Rational Wiki [1]. I find myself in agreement with most of it, but will not even try to fix the problems since it is out of my field. Any volunteers? Sandy Harris 06:53, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

Well, I've seen the critique; this article was largely written by Nancy Sculerati who aimed it very much at the level of secondary schoolchildren, and that's the level others who joined in tried to follow. So it tried to avoid jargon - so the critique finds putting inverted commas around "fitted" strange - in fact that's exactly the right thing to do, the word is not being used in its natural language sense and the inverted commas flag exactly that. There's always the danger in introducing errors when an article is simlified to that level, but I thought it did a pretty good job of avoiding those, and I don't think there aren't any errors in it that I can see. Of course things can sometimes be read in ways that make them seem wrong, as the critic has done. But those are rather easy and cheap shots. It's also the case and always was that an article like this always excludes some things that I think are important, emphasises some things that I think are trivial etc etc - there's always a voice to an article. In this case the voice of the original article (the present approved version is an evolved version of that) was mainly Nancy's and most people thought it was an outstanding example of clear, fluent, highly accessible science writing.

But, the critique says "Darwin came up with the idea of natural selection.'" No, that's wrong, several others had before Darwin (Owen, Blyth, Mathew, Wells...), what he came up with was the idea of natural selection as a mechanism for evolution. Subtle difference, but it explains how Nancy's words were strictly correct and the critic's were a popular fallacy. Darwin himself never used the word evolution anywhere, and according to Ernst Mayr, "The person who has the soundest claim for priority in establishing a theory of evolution by natural selection is Patrck Mathew" - and Darwin himself wrote "I freely acknowledge that Mr Mathew has anticipated by many years the explanation which I have offered of the origin of species, under the name of natural selection." Mathew's term for it was slightly different - he called it 'Nature's law of selection.'

The critic says "First off, before Darwin was Lamarckism and other evolutionary theories that were not natural selection." OK this critic is confused (and ignorant of Mathew), but understandably - it's much more complex. a) others (including those above) had considered natural selection as a major part of evolutionary processes, b) There's nothing in Lamarckism that is inconsistent with natural selection - indeed Darwin himself assumed that some acquired characteristics were likely to be heritable, he was a Lamarckist himself in part. c) the power of articial selection to change the phenotype of a species was well known before Darwin - and the potential was there for natural selection to do the same, as recognised for example by Mathew. But artificial selection did not result in new species, and the potential for this requires deep time - and that needed Hutton, Playfair and Lyell...

Now the derivation of multiple species - the article doesn't explicitly discuss this - and yes it is a very important step to understand that evolution of species can be by a series of bifurcations rather than by "progressive" adaptations. But that's a confusion that persisted long, long after Darwin and arguably still persists. Too complex for this I think.

It's very tough writing science to be both accurate and accessible, and there will always be errors. But I think here there's a case that it is the common populist account that is in error - what's in the article in this section may be, in a strict sense, more correct that common popular accounts.

But don't be afraid. For sure the wording can always be improved. Go ahead and change, it's easy for me or others to see whether that change has in fact made a strictly correct statement wrong. And there will no doubt be some errors, perhaps more than I think likely.Gareth Leng 11:32, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

That's not to say it can't be improved and some of the points in the critique are fair - the words can be better chosen in places in that section.Gareth Leng 10:41, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

The author of the critique has now added "suggestions for improvement". Sandy Harris 11:34, 15 January 2011 (UTC)
Yes, reading this article again I agree that the changes between the first approved version and the second, present version introduced some dislocation of style, so parts are still at a very lay level while many others are now at an advanced level. The criticisms of style are very fair, I don't see that criticisms of accuracy are correct, and the content and order - there will always be radical differences of opinion on those. The content would be very different from this version or the suggestions had I written it - but that just shows there are many ways in which this article might be written, and different incompatible views on what is best. but that's true of every article. I think unifying the style and simplifying the writing wherever it is technical would be good. If you want to take that on Sandy, I'm happy to watch your back on accuracy. Maybe a way forward is to do what we did on Life and add a subpage with a [simplified version]. I can see that the present version is in parts just too advanced and large bits would be omitted in a lay version, while some bits (including the evolution section) might go the other way in the advanced version.
But whoever wrote the critique is welcome here also to put that into practise. We're not precious here, anyone with good intents is very welcome. Constructive criticism is always healthy, it's always useful - even when we think its misguided it carries a message worth listening to. It is however a lot easier to find faults than correct them.

Gareth Leng 12:20, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

I do not want to take it on. I have only a high school level knowledge of this field; there are other areas at CZ where I am both more knowledgeable and more interested.
Also, I live in China and the biggest holiday of the year is coming up. This week I'm busy trying to get things finished before the holiday, then I'll be travelling. I'm unlikely to any significant CZ work before I return, late February. Sandy Harris 12:51, 15 January 2011 (UTC)
Fine. I'm too busy right now also. When I've time, I'll start a student level subpage (if I can work out how to do that) and move the first approved version of Biology there (Matt, can you help me do that - sorry but you know how incompetent I am) and I'll start from that, but maybe you wouldn't mind helping by advising on what's understandable and what's not - 'fraid I sometimes (often) don't notice those things like I should.Gareth Leng 15:21, 15 January 2011 (UTC)
I've started the Student level page and placed the Version 1.0 approved version in the page. Remember that there are several updates shortly after that corrected some minor/embarrassing problems, so if you decide you would rather start with another version just let me know!D. Matt Innis 20:47, 15 January 2011 (UTC)


How about adding the first approved version (may have got the number wrong here) as a student level subpage to the main article, and we work on that version to restructure but keep at a very lay level?Gareth Leng 12:43, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

Montage licensing

Nice as it is, I think we may have to lose it over licensing issues. At least one - Image:KildLaughing.jpg - has no real name associated with it, and no evidence that it one was obtained when this was discussed in 2007. If so, that means that the original image and all three versions of the montage will have to be deleted. John Stephenson 17:32, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

I've quickly uploaded a new version of the montage with that image edited out, doesn't seem to have loaded yet - maybe there's a delayGareth Leng 15:14, 22 January 2011 (UTC)
Curious, click on it and you see the new version.Gareth Leng 15:16, 22 January 2011 (UTC)

(unindent) There are a couple of tiger pics that can replace the one here, which is a probable copyvio (no real name data). We can use Image:Panthera tigris 2.jpg, for example. John Stephenson 07:31, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Licensing summary

Image Licence Owners Source
File:Krilleyekils.jpg CC-by-sa-3.0 Gerd Alberti and Uwe Kils
File:Morning Glory Pool2.jpg Public domain Jon Sullivan via
File:Amanita muscaria tyndrum.jpg Public domain Tim Bekaert
File:Mariposa Grove Squoias.JPG CC-by-sa-3.0 Mike Murphy
File:Daphnia pulex.png CC-by-2.5 Paul Hebert
File:A single white feather closeup.jpg Public domain?
Dead source link
Joao Estevao Andrade de Freitas [dead link] via
File:Salmonella typhimurium.png CC-by-2.5 Volker Brinkmann
File:Plagiomnium affine laminazellen.jpeg CC-by-sa 3.0 Kristian Peters
File:MEF microfilaments.jpg CC-by-sa 3.0 Y tambe
File:As08-16-2593.jpg Public domain NASA, probably taken by Bill Anders via
File:Misc pollen.jpg Public domain Dartmouth Electron Microscope Facility, Dartmouth College
File:Bottlenose Dolphin KSC04pd0178.jpg Public domain NASA
File:LightRefractsOf comb-rows of ctenophore Mertensia ovum.jpg Public domain NOAA
Image:Kleiner_Fuchs_(Nymphalis_urticae).jpg CC-by-sa-2.5 No real name
Image:Tigergebiss.jpg CC-by-sa-3.0 No real name; can be replaced with e.g. Image:Panthera tigris 2.jpg
Image:KildLaughing.jpg None No evidence of copyright permission

Note that as the montage is a derivative work, all these owners should be credited on its page. John Stephenson 06:55, 3 May 2012 (UTC)