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Posted by patricia sherman on October 06, 2002 at 04:03:52:
I was just browsing the "Hybrid" forum for the first time today, and ran across a query about whether or not it would be possible to hybridize an Asian elaphe with a North American lampropeltis. The answer intrigued me. Basically, the response was that it is highly unlikely, since the North American elaphe is more closely related to the lampropeltis, than it is to the Asian elaphe.
If these species (North American elaphe and Asian elaphe) are so different as not to be capable of hybrizing, how come that they're both in the same genus? By the same token, if lampropeltis is capable of hybridizing with North American elaphe, why aren't they both in the same genus? Also, I have to wonder where the European elaphe fit into this apparently skewed classification. Presumably, if Asian elaphe can't hybridize with North American elaphe, then neither can Europeans. Can Europeans and Asians hybridize?