Pennantia baylisiana


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Pennantia baylisiana
Species Authority: (W.R.B.Oliv.) G.T.S.Baylis
Common Name(s):
English Three Kings Kaikomako

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered D ver 3.1
Year Published: 2014
Date Assessed: 2013-08-31
Assessor(s): de Lange, P.
Reviewer(s): Rivers, M.C.
This is a small tree species endemic to New Zealand where it is found only on Great Island in the Three Kings Island Group. Only a single tree is remaining in the wild and therefore, this species is assessed as Critically Endangered based on criterion D.
1998 Critically Endangered

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is endemic to Great Island (Manawa Tawhi) in Three Kings Islands Group, New Zealand where it was discovered in 1946.

This species has an extent of occurrence (EOO), and maximum area of occupancy (AOO), of c. 0.5 km2.
New Zealand (North Is.)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species has only ever been known from a single tree. Although sexed as female, the tree has produced viable pollen.
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species grows in coastal forest. It is a rare, multi-trunked small tree bearing very large broad glossy curled leaves. The leaves are 120-160 mm long and widest towards the tip. The flowers are small, green and in clusters along branches. Flowering is from October to November. The fruit is purple, 10 mm long and contains a single seed. Fruiting occurs between January and April in cultivated material. Ripe fruit has been seen in the wild during February and March.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Initially P. baylisiana and indeed all other Three Kings endemic plants were at serious risk from goats and habitat destruction as a consequence of human occupation. Goats were successfully eradicated from the islands in 1946. Since then the single individual tree has persisted despite periodic storm and drought damage which may kill entire trunks. However, being female the tree was until recently considered functionally extinct. Apparently viable fruits were first found in the wild in 1989, and these, along with fruiting cutting grown plants in New Zealand, provide one source of securing the species. However, until such time as more trees occur in the wild, P. baylisiana remains seriously at risk of extinction through natural events such as storms or senescence through old age.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: In 2012, this species was classified as 'Threatened - Nationally Critical' based on the New Zealand Threat Classification System with the qualifiers Conservation Dependent (CD), Island Endemic (IE) and One Location (OL). This is based on criterion A(1) which is met when there are under 250 mature individuals in the population (Townsend et al. 2008, de Lange et al. 2013).

Some seedlings have been raised ex situ.

Bibliography [top]

de Lange, P.J. 1997. Threatened woody dicots: candidate listings from the New Zealand Botanical Region (unpublished).

de Lange, P.J., Rolfe, J.R., Champion, P.D., Courtney, S.P., Heenan, P.B., Barkla, J.W., Cameron, E.K., Norton, D.A. and Hitchmough, R.A. 2013. Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2012. New Zealand Threat Classification Series 3. Department of Conservation, Wellington.

Given, D.R. 1988. Rare and endangered plants - protection and conservation. In: Proceedings of the New Zealand Parks and Recreation Admin. Conference, 1987 pp.151-165.

IUCN. 2014. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. Available at: (Accessed: 24 July 2014).

Oates, M.R. and de Lange, P.J. 1995. Annotations to: Conservation status listing of plants of New Zealand.

Oates, M.R. and de Lange, P.J. 1996. The current status of woody vegetation in New Zealand. In: D.R. Hunt (ed.) Temperate Trees under Threat. Proceedings of an International Dendrological Society Symposium on the Conservation Status of Temperate Trees, 30 Sept.-1 Oct. 1994.

Townsend, A.J., de Lange, P.J., Duffy, C.A.J., Miskelly, C.M., Molloy, J. and Norton, D.A. 2008. New Zealand Threat Classification System Manual. Department of Conservation, Wellington.

Williams, G.R. and Given, D.R. 1981. The Red Data Book of New Zealand: rare and endangered species of endemic terrestrial vertebrates and vascular plants. Nature Conservation Council, Wellington, New Zealand.

Citation: de Lange, P. 2014. Pennantia baylisiana. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 31 August 2015.
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