Like you say - common names are a problem. The following - mountain lion, catamount, panther, cougar, puma, and possibly more - are all names for the same animal - Felis concolor
or "cat of one color". It all depends where you live. People can be talking about the same animal and not know it.
Jan in Chatsworth where there are mountain lions
donald <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> We have snakes around here that look like that and they call them rat
> snakes! Are they the same?
More than likely, they are. Rat snake would be a common name applied
the same as chicken snake. If scientific species names weren't so hard
to remember, spell and pronounce, it would end a lot of confusion by
using them. We learn things otherwise, though. Monikers applied to
both animals and especially plants tend to vary between different
locales. I learned about 'ditch lilies' via Iris Talk. I'd seen them
before, but never heard them called that in Texas. Orange hemerocallis
that grows with abandon. I think it is called other names in other
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