TermMeaning
AdventiveThese are non-indigenous species that are living in New Zealand. They may also be called exotic, introduced, alien or naturalised species. They may have arrived accidentally or have been deliberately introduced to the country. If they have been deliberately introduced, for example for biological control of a weed, they may be termed established.
AlienThese are non-indigenous species that are living in New Zealand. They may also be called exotic, introduced, adventive or naturalised species. They may have arrived accidentally or have been deliberately introduced to the country. If they have been deliberately introduced, for example for biological control of a weed, they may be termed established.
BiostatusInformation about each species indicating their origins and kinds of places they occur in New Zealand. Various terms are used for both origins and occurrence. They have been standardised in the in the factsheets. The terms used differ slightly for plants and invertebrates.
CaptiveThese are non-indigenous invertebrate species that are or have been held in captivity in New Zealand and do not exist in the wild. The term may include species that have been released into New Zealand, but have not established.
Common namesThese are non-scientific names of organisms. They include Māori names and may also be called vernacular names. Sometimes an existing common name can refer to more than one species of organism. And conversely an organism can have more than one common name in which case they are listed as synonyms.
CultivatedThese are plants that exist only in cultivation in New Zealand. Some plants that are mainly present in cultivation also have wild populations and are therefore classed as naturalised, exotic or exotic (casual).
DistributionPlaces where species lives, including its native ecosystems and places to where it has spread in historical times.
EndemicThese species occur naturally only in New Zealand. They are indigenous to this region.
EstablishedThese are non-indigenous species that have accidentally arrived or have been deliberately introduced, for example for biological control of a weed. They may also be called adventive,alien,exotic or naturalised species.
ExoticThese are non-indigenous species that are living in New Zealand. They may also be called adventive or naturalised species. They may have arrived accidentally or have been deliberately introduced to the country. If they have been deliberately introduced, for example for biological control of a weed, they may be termed established.
FungivoresFungivores are animals, invertebrate and vertebrate, that feed on fungi.
HerbivoresHerbivores are animals, invertebrate and vertebrate, that feed on plants
Host plantA host plant is a plant species on which at least one life stage of a herbivore feeds without being harmed and can pass on to the next life stage or lay fertile eggs.
IndigenousThese species occur naturally in New Zealand. They may only occur in New Zealand (endemic) or naturally in other regions of the world as well (non-endemic).
InsectAn invertebrate with an exoskeleton, the body divided into segments and typically in three groups, a head, a thorax and an abdomen. The thorax usually has three pairs of legs and adults may have two pairs of wings.
InvertebrateThese are animal that does not have a backbone, vertebrate. They include worms, molluscs (snails, slugs), crustacea (slaters, crabs), spiders, mites and insects.
Māori NamesThese are non-scientific names used by Māori for organisms. Sometimes a Māori name can refer to more than one species of organism. Sometimes an organism can have more than one Māori name in which case they are listed as synonyms.
MiteA small invertebrate with an exoskeleton and with a head and combined thorax and abdomen. Typically they have 4 pairs of legs just behind the head. Most mites are terrestrial.
MonophagousFeeds on only one species (of plant).
NativeThese species occur naturally in New Zealand and other regions of the world. This is the preferred term for insects and other invertebrates. The term non-endemic is also used for these species, which are also indigenous to this region.
NaturalisedThese are non-indigenous species of plants that grow wild in New Zealand. They may also be called exotic, introduced, alien or adventive species. They may have arrived accidentally or have been deliberately introduced to the country. This group includes plants that have ‘escaped’ from cultivation and have established breeding populations in the wild.
Non-endemicThese species occur naturally in New Zealand and other regions of the world. This is the preferred term for plants. The term native is also used for these species, which are also indigenous to this region.
Non-indigenousThese are species from other geographic regions that have arrived in New Zealand relatively recently. They may also be called adventives, exotic or naturalised species. They may have arrived accidentally or have been deliberately introduced to the country. If they have been deliberately introduced, for example for biological control of a weed, they may be termed established.
OligophagousFeeds on several species of plant organism (plant, fungus, insect etc.). Oligophagous herbivores may be divided into two groups, those that feed on species in one genus and those feeding on species in several genera and which can be in up to two families. The first group being indicated as Oligophagous (genus).
OverseasThis is for plants and invertebrates that do not live in New Zealand, but for which there is information about New Zealand organisms that are associated with them.
ParasitesParasites are organisms that live on other organisms, but do not usually do not kill their host.
ParasitoidsThese are insects that have characteristics of parasites and predators. Usually a single larva feeds on and kills its host. It usually lives on or inside one host. Sometimes several parasitoid larvae will live on or inside one host insect.
PathogensPathogens are micro-organisms that live on/in other living organisms. They include fungi, bacteria, and viruses. Sometimes the fungal pathogens are more visible than the insect host and can be sometimes be used to identify the presence of the insect, especially scale insects.
PollinatorsPollinators are organism that assist the transfer of pollen between flowers. Many insect pollinators also feed on the pollen and nectar produced by the plant and are technically herbivores.
PolyphagousFeeds on many species (of plant). A herbivore is sometimes defined as polyphagous if it feeds on species from three or more families of plants.
PredatorsThese are animals, invertebrate and vertebrate, that catch, kill and consume other organisms. One predator usually catches and consumes several or many prey. The definition is usually restricted to animals that catch other animals. However, the term is sometimes used for herbivores that feed on plants. For example seed eating insects may be called seed predators. Leaf feeding insects may also be called predators.
SaprovoresSaprovores are organisms that feed on dead and decomposing organisms. Saprovores may be primarily feeding on the micro-organisms in the dead organism. Those that feed on dead plant tissue are important in the process of recycling and making the nutrients in dead plants and animals available to living plants for their growth.
Scientific namesThese are the names given to organisms when they are formally described in scientific literature.
SynonymsSometimes the scientific name of a species changes as a result of new information. The old name is called a synonym. If there is more than one common name (including Maori names) these are listed as synonyms.
Tag namesThese are names given to species of invertebrates and plants that have not been formally described.
UnknownThis is for species where the biostatus is unknown. This mainly refers to plants and invertebrates where the genus is known and the species name is not known, and where species in the genus have variable origins, i.e. some are endemic or native in New Zealand and some come from other regions of the world.
Vernacular namesThese are non-scientific names of organisms. They include Māori names and may also be called common names. Sometimes an existing vernacular name can refer to more than one species of organism. And conversely an organism can have more than one common name in which case they are listed as synonyms.
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