An abundance of tree ferns is one of the botanical characteristics that New Zealand shares with many of the larger Pacific Islands. The number of different species is not especially high, but tree fern individuals feature prominently in many Pacific and New Zealand landscapes.
Following my work in Fiji, I’ve produced an online guide to Fiji’s tree ferns. Pictures and diagnostic tips should help distinguish the different species. This complements our existing online guide to New Zealand’s tree ferns.
I hope the Fijian tree fern guide will be useful to tourists interested in Fiji’s biodiversity, and to locals managing these plants as a resource.
Cyathea lunulata is a good species to initially learn, as it is the most obvious tree fern in the lowlands of Fiji. It also occurs on other Pacific Islands. In fact, most of the tree ferns in Fiji also occur somewhere else, meaning this guide has some applicability to places like Samoa, Vanuatu, Tonga, and the Cook Islands (but not to New Caledonia, which has its own distinct set of tree ferns).
All of the photos in the online guide are high resolution, and you should be able to ‘zoom in’ on them. However, technical limitations of our website currently prevent this. If you want to see this fixed, leaving a comment below may help prioritise the development of Te Papa’s website.