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Notes on the vegetation of the Auckland Islands


, : Notes on the vegetation of the Auckland Islands. Proc New Zeal Ecol Soc 12: 57-63

It is suggested that at least 18 species of vascular plants are characteristic of or confined to higher altitudes, and many of these are endemic to the New Zealand subantarctic islands. Brief notes are given on the relatively unknown upland vegetation; and on a common pattern of vegetation in the lowlands consisting of parallel lines of scrub with open Oreobolus lanes between. The three main islands in Ross Harbor are briefly described. Rose Island has coastal Poa litorosa tussock-grassland to the north and Metrosideros umbellata scrub and forest to the south. It is argues that on Enderby Island an original P. litorosa grassland belt has been modified by fire and introduced animals to either a sward of small grasses or to dense areas of Bulbinella rossii a summer-green herb. It is also argued that the P. litorosa belt on Ewing Island has been colonized by a tree composite, Olearia lyallii. This composite is only found in patches around Ross Harbor. After examination of records by earlier visiting botanists it is suggested that O. lyallii is not a relic on the Auckland Islands as previously thought, but a new and aggressive immigrant, which probably arrived from the Snares Islands or Southern New Zealand in the early 19th century.

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