New Zealand forests grow under highly oceanic climates on an isolated southern archipelago. They experience a combination of historical and environmental factors matched nowhere else. This paper explores whether the New Zealand tree flora also differs systematically from those found in other temperate and island areas. A compilation of traits and distributions from standard floras is used to compare the New Zealand tree flora with those of Europe, North America, Chile, southern Australia, Fiji and Hawaii. New Zealand has a large number of trees (215 species ≥6 m in height).
Since the 1980s, morphological and molecular research has resulted in significant advances in understanding the relationships and origins of the recent terrestrial vertebrate fauna in the New Zealand biogeographic region. This research has led to many taxonomic changes, with a significant increase in the number of bird and reptile species recognised. It has also resulted in the recognition of several more Holocene (Hemidactylus frenatus).
Most non-native weeds and other naturalised plants are in the early stages of invasion into New Zealand landscapes. For this invasion to be controlled, even partially, it is important to understand the dominant routes, mechanisms, and rates of weed spread across landscapes. With their linear corridors of disturbed habitats, roadsides are thought to play a large role in the spread of some weeds.