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New Zealand’s threatened bryophytes: Conservation efforts

By Allan J. Fife, David Glenny, Jessica E. Beever, John E. Braggins, Patrick J, Matthew A. M. Renner and Rod Hitchmough


The New Zealand bryophyte flora is highly diverse with latest figures for the number of formally described species recognized being 534 mosses, 616 liverworts and 13 hornworts. A relatively high percentage of the bryophyte species is considered to be endemic (c. 21 % of mosses, c. 50 % of hepatics, and c. 60 % of hornworts). Additionally, the New Zealand landscape is highly modified, particularly in lowland areas and in eastern portions of the two main islands. There, lowland forests and grasslands have largely been converted to pastoral and agricultural land uses with a consequent reduction of native plant diversity. These and other factors have led in recent years to an increased conservation focus on New Zealand’s rarer bryophytes. While bryophyte conservation efforts to date have focused on documentation, some tentative moves have been made towards active management of our rarest taxa. Under the auspices of the New Zealand Department of Conservation (hereafter DOC), a “specialist panel ” of bryologists has met on a roughly three-yearly basis since 1992 to rank poorly documented and rare bryophyte taxa using a nationally developed “New Zealand Threat Classification System”. Since 1992 this ranking of bryophytes has gone

Publisher: 2013-09-24
Year: 2013
OAI identifier: oai:CiteSeerX.psu:
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