Family (biology)

Taxonomic rank between genus and order / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Family (Latin: familia, pl.: familiae) is one of the eight major hierarchical taxonomic ranks in Linnaean taxonomy. It is classified between order and genus.[1] A family may be divided into subfamilies, which are intermediate ranks between the ranks of family and genus. The official family names are Latin in origin; however, popular names are often used: for example, walnut trees and hickory trees belong to the family Juglandaceae, but that family is commonly referred to as the "walnut family".

The hierarchy of biological classification's eight major taxonomic ranks. An order contains one or more families. Intermediate minor rankings are not shown.

The delineation of what constitutes a family, or whether a described family should be acknowledged, is established and decided upon by active taxonomists. There are not strict regulations for outlining or acknowledging a family, yet in the realm of plants, these classifications often rely on both the vegetative and reproductive characteristics of plant species. Taxonomists frequently hold varying perspectives on these descriptions, leading to a lack of widespread consensus within the scientific community for extended periods. The continual publication of new data and diverse opinions plays a crucial role in facilitating adjustments and ultimately reaching a consensus over time.

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