Invasive Species Compendium

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Abstract

Towards a checklist of the vascular flora of Vanuatu.

Abstract

Vanuatu is an archipelago in the southwest Pacific that, to date, has no modern checklist of its flora, despite the fact that it sits in the midst of several other archipelagos of known species richness (New Caledonia, Fiji, and the Solomon Islands, among others). The present study describes our effort to establish a checklist of accepted species names that apply to taxa known or thought to occur in Vanuatu. In collating data from the Vanuatu National Herbarium (PVNH) and online databases (including virtual herbaria and database compilations), we have developed a checklist of 1,631 species of vascular plants, of which 1,262 (77.4%) are putatively native, and 360 (22.1%) introduced (the distributional status of the remaining 0.5% are uncertain). Endemics represent 10.1% of all species (native plus introduced), but 13.1% when considering native species only. This article is linked to a dynamic checklist available online that will be continually updated, and we encourage members of the global botanical community, especially those with expertise in the taxa listed or the general floristics of the Pacific Islands, to provide corrections and additions.