usage of word "species"

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resoluteman

Senior Member
Azerbaijan
i'm quite confused about the usage of "species" . I know that this word can be used as both, plural and singular, but when to use this word in singular or conversely and how to figure out why its used particularly in that way in the context. for example:

"A species that has died out completely is called extintct"
"A species that have a high, but not immediate risk of dying out are simply labeled endangered"
"A species is labeled critically endangered when its in immediate danger"
 
  • cando

    Senior Member
    English - British
    The word “species” does have the same spelling in both singular and plural forms, but you can tell which one is being used from the article and the verb. Your second sentence mixes these up.

    A species” (singular indefinite article) cannot take the plural verb forms “have” and “are”.

    If you are talking about more than one species (plural), simply say:

    “"Species that have a high, but not immediate risk of dying out are simply labeled endangered"

    Your other sentences are correct if you are talking about a single species.
     

    Albatrosspro

    Senior Member
    English - USA
    The second sentence uses species as a collective noun, which is something we don't do. A species that have
    • A species has
    • These species have
    • The members of this species/of these species have
    Also ditto to what cando said.
     

    resoluteman

    Senior Member
    Azerbaijan
    The second sentence uses species as a collective noun, which is something we don't do. A species that have
    • A species has
    • These species have
    • The members of this species/of these species have
    Also ditto to what cando said.
    The word “species” does have the same spelling in both singular and plural forms, but you can tell which one is being used from the article and the verb. Your second sentence mixes these up.

    A species” (singular indefinite article) cannot take the plural verb forms “have” and “are”.

    If you are talking about more than one species (plural), simply say:

    “"Species that have a high, but not immediate risk of dying out are simply labeled endangered"

    Your other sentences are correct if you are talking about a single species.
    thanks to both of you. and what im curious about to know is why author used singular form when it's referred to extinct species and why plural along with endangered species, i wanna figure out the reason behind this.
     

    pob14

    Senior Member
    American English
    thanks to both of you. and what im curious about to know is why author used singular form when it's referred to extinct species and why plural along with endangered species, i wanna figure out the reason behind this.
    You would have to ask the author; I agree with both of the above posters that the second sentence ["a species that have"] is wrong. (So is "wanna," but you didn't ask about that. :))
     

    resoluteman

    Senior Member
    Azerbaijan
    You would have to ask the author; I agree with both of the above posters that the second sentence ["a species that have"] is wrong. (So is "wanna," but you didn't ask about that. :))
    just wanted to dig into a bit deeper, authors' thoughts have always been crucial for me
     

    Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    A species that has died out completely is called extinct.
    A species that have a high, but not immediate risk of dying out are simply labeled endangered.
    A species is labeled critically endangered when it's in immediate danger.
    I don't know where you copied these from, but (aside from the misspellings I've corrected and the periods I've added), the second sentence is wrong: "A" indicates singular, while "have" and "are" are plural; either the initial article should be omitted, or the verbs should be changed.
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Here is a document I found on the internet (linked from a Chinese site) that contains these sentences (Endangered Species-360文档中心)

    4 A species that has died out completely is called extinct.

    6 A species is labeled critically endangered when it is in immediate danger of dying out completely.

    8 Species that have a high, but not immediate, risk of dying out are simply labeled endangered .
    Note that there is no A at the beginning of sentence labeled #8. It looks like someone has copied these sentences and introduced some errors along the way. All the sentences in the original are fine.

    (Added in edit) The writer has used both singular and plural in different sentences so that the text does not sound repetitive. In each case the sentence could have been written with either. I see no significant difference in the intended meaning by the alternation of singular and plural.

    (Words in English that end in s can confuse native speakers, too, especially if they have not had a broad education, and you may encounter incorrect words like specie and serie because someone thinks the s means it is a plural word and that to make the singular you remove the s:().
     
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