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Understanding New Zealand native plants, Ranunculus crithmifolius subspecies paucifolius

Morore Piripi

Morore Piripi

Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution,
Institute of Molecular BioSciences
Massey University
Palmerston North
New Zealand
Email: mortz@inspire.net.nz
Tel: 6463569099
Fax: 6463505622

Dr. Peter Lockhart (AWCMEE),
MSc student

Title The Castle Hill buttercup: Ranunculus crithmifolius sub. paucifolius

Castle Hill

The Castle Hill buttercup, Ranunculus crithmifolius sub. paucifolius is one of New Zealand's rarest plants. It is regarded under World Conservation Union (IUCN) criteria as a critically endangered species due to its restricted distribution and small population. It is found only in the McCaskill reserve at Kura Tawhiti in North Canterbury, and the entire population totals less than two hundred plants. The principal objective of my research is to understand the origin and nature of the buttercup. How unique is this buttercup? Botanists have long argued this point. My research, which uses DNA sequencing nd fingerprinting studies, will hopefully answer this question.