Why is binomial nomenclature useful?

1 Answer

Because it gives distinct names given to a species in a genus.


In the hierarchy of taxonomy, these 2, species and genus are the most bottom

Now, what I mean by distinct names I mean by this:

Take it from this example. Let us try Bacteria from 2 species in the genus Staphylococcus.

Staphylococcus aureus is a bacterium commonly associated in food poisoning. In the microscope, they look like this


They are like cluster of grapes.

Let us compare another bacterium in the same genus, Staphylococcus.

Staphylococcus epidermidis is bacterium commonly associated with invasion of prosthetic parts implanted in the body, e,g., prosthetic heart valves, prosthetic joints, etc. Microscopically, this organism looks like this


The former and the latter organisms are similar in a way that they actually look similar microscopically, but differ in how they react chemically. Now, for example we have 5 tests in which we can differentiate them. Let us say that Staphylococcus aureus is positive to Test 1, 2 and 3, but negative to Test 4 and Test 5 and let's say that Staphylococcus epidermidis is positive in test 4 and 5, negative to 1 and 2.

Without the binomial nomenclature, we can designate them as this.

"Grape-like" clusters of circle bacteria positive to Test 1, 2 and 3, Negative to Test 4 and 5.

"Grape-like" clusters of circle bacteria positive to Test 4 and 5 but negative to Test 1, 2 and 3.

Imagine how many species are there in Staphylococcus and imagine writing those bacteria without binomial nomenclature. We could have gone nuts! Imagine using them in animals as well.

That's why, to avoid confusion and to conserve the time and effort to write these organisms, the binomial system was created and proved its importance ever since.

Sorry it was long. But I hope it helped! :D