As a taxonomic reference for moths, I suggest following the North American Checklist with Synonymies
at All-Leps. The list was developed by the people named at the bottom of this page
, and appears to be the most taxonomically up-to-date list available (moreso even than the relatively up-to-date Butterflies and Moths of the World
and Moths of Canada
The list initially shows superfamilies and their included families, but can be expanded to show subfamilies and tribes (when available), plus genera, species, synonyms, and subspecies (when applicable).
Example: superfamily Bombycoidea includes family Saturniidae, which expands to show subfamily Hemileucinae > tribe Hemileucini > genus Automeris
> species cecrops
plus 5 synonyms and 2 subspecies (cecrops
The hierarchal structure of the list is based on taxonomic relationships, but names within each subgroup are arranged alphabetically for convenience.
Another point in favor of the All-Leps list is the quick response of the people maintaining it. Yesterday morning, I noticed that the family Elachistidae was listed twice by mistake (under Gelechioidea and Noctuoidea), so I completed their Comment form
and sent it. The mistake was corrected yesterday afternoon.
At BugGuide, I suggest that we create superfamily pages, and put the families listed here
into their appropriate groups. I also think it would be helpful to add Hodges numbers to any species pages that currently lack them, for the convenience of those who use BugGuide's Search feature to locate species by number. And lastly, I suggest that the names of taxa within each taxonomic group continue to be arranged alphabetically for the convenience of the general public.
Last year, Joel Kits discussed here
using Opler & Warren's list as a taxonomic reference for butterflies, and although All-Leps includes butterflies, I suggest that any comments relating to butterflies be added to the thread that Joel started
rather than here.