Past Events

Ghosts of Gondwana. Do they really exist?

Wednesday 11th of July 2007, 06:00 PM (13 years ago)

Contact: Trish Fleming | trish.fleming@botany.otago.ac.nz | (03) 479 7577

The John Smaillie Tennant Lecture 2007. A talk by Professor George Gibbs, School of Biological Sciences, Victoria University Wellington, New Zealand. The ghosts in question are the native plants and animals that are assumed to have been inherited from the ancient supercontinent of Gondwana at the time when New Zealand became an independent entity Under this scenario, their descendants still form part of the modern flora and fauna of New Zealand. Perhaps this simplistic 'Moa's Ark' view of New Zealand fails to take sufficient account of the result of trans-oceanic dispersal, which we know brings lots of organisms to our shores and presumably always has. This talk will discuss the current status of views on the origins of our life forms and show just how difficult it can be to 'prove' that any particular organism can claim to be a Gondwanan ghost. Note different venue. At the Archway 4 Lecture Theatre (access from Union Street East). All staff, students and interested members of the general public are welcome to attend. Light refreshments will be served in the Otago University Staff Club, 80 Union Place West from 5:30 p.m.

Protection of native biodiversity and botanical values on privately owned land in Otago

Wednesday 20th of June 2007, 05:20 PM (13 years ago)

Contact: Kevin Gould | kevin.gould@botany.otago.ac.nz | (03) 479 9061

A talk by Aalbert Rebergen, Biodiversity Officer with the Otago Regional Council. The voluntary protection of native biodiversity in general and botanical values in particular, on farms and other privately owned land in Otago. At the Zoology Benham Building, 346 Great King Street, behind the Zoology car park by the Captain Cook Hotel. Use the main entrance of the Benham Building to get in and go to the Benham Seminar Room, Rm. 215, 2nd floor. Please be prompt as we have to hold the door open

Trip to Chrystalls Beach near Milton

Sunday 17th of June 2007, 09:00 AM (13 years ago)

Contact: John Barkla | mjbarkla@xtra.co.nz | (03) 476 3686

The sand dune system at Chrystalls Beach is made up of front dune, dune hollow and rear dune areas. Most of the dune hollow is occupied by grassland communities except for an area of distinctive cushionfield, comprising mostly native species. Many of the plants are seldom found along the coast and some are considered nationally threatened. We will explore this rare community and assist in its maintenance by pulling out invasive lupin seedlings. Leaves 9 AM from Botany Carpark, returning mid-afternoon. Bring lunch and clothing suitable for an exposed coastal situation

Fungal Foray to Knights Bush, Tuapeka West

Saturday 19th of May 2007, 08:30 AM (13 years ago)

Contact: David Orlovich | david.orlovich@otago.ac.nz | 0211227230

John and Alli Knight's forest on the banks of the Clutha River has a variety of fungal habitats, ranging from Pinus radiata at the top, kanuka (Kunzea ericoides) and native beech (Nothofagus menziesii and N. solandri) on the slopes and mixed podocarp/broadleaf/Nothofagus on the river flat. There may be some cross-country walking and some of the forest tracks are steepish. Wear boots with good support and grip. Cameras are a good idea; fungi are very photogenic. Leader, David Orlovich, along with international mycologist and slime mold expert Prof. Steve Stephenson. Full day trip, (with opportunity to stay overnight in tent or smoky hut. Contact Allison Knight, 487 8265 for this). Leave Botany Dept car park 8.30 am, Return 6.30 pm (or after lunch the next day). If weather is unsuitable on Saturday a day trip on Sunday may be possible.

Botany and wildlife of Macauley Island, Southern Kermadecs.

Wednesday 16th of May 2007, 05:20 PM (13 years ago)

Contact: Kevin Gould | kevin.gould@botany.otago.ac.nz | (03) 479 9061

Talk by John Barkla, DOC. John will tell us about his recent trip to the seldom visited Macauley Island, 1000 km north-east of the Northland coast. Just getting there was an adventure in itself! The island's vegetation has undergone a huge transformation since goats were removed in 1970. On this trip an operation to rid the island of rats was also carried out. At the Zoology Benham Building, 346 Great King Street, behind the Zoology car park by the Captain Cook Hotel. Use the main entrance of the Benham Building to get in and go to the Benham Seminar Room, Rm. 215, 2nd floor. Please be prompt as we have to hold the door open.

An evening of Botanical Photography and AGM

Wednesday 18th of April 2007, 05:20 PM (13 years ago)

Contact: Kevin Gould | kevin.gould@botany.otago.ac.nz | (03) 479 9061

Renowned photographers Rod Morris, Peter Johnson and Kelvin Lloyd will judge the inaugural BSO photographic competition following a brief AGM. Entries will be on display, photographic tips given and prizes presented. It's not too late to enter. Entries close 30 March. See BSO website or notice board for entry forms. At the Zoology Benham Building, 346 Great King Street, behind the Zoology car park by the Captain Cook Hotel. Use the main entrance of the Benham Building to get in and go to the Benham Seminar Room, Rm. 215, 2nd floor. Please be prompt as we have to hold the door open.

Field trip to the DOC reserve at Nenthorn/Macraes.

Sunday 15th of April 2007, 08:30 AM (13 years ago)

Contact: Mike Thorsen | mike.esr@xtra.co.nz | (03) 453 6800

Nenthorn/Macraes (inland from Palmerston) is best known as a site for rare skink conservation but there is also great botanical diversity, including over 25 threatened plants. It's a landscape of rolling tussockland dotted with lichen encrusted schist rock outcrops, shallow ephemeral wetlands, and the odd deep gully with shrubby remnants. We'll seek out some of the less familiar species and should encounter coral broom, wetland herbs such as Gratiola nana and Tetrachondra hamiltonii, and the rare grass Simplicia laxa. Leave Botany carpark at 8.30 am Sunday and return around 6 pm. Bring lunch and be prepared for cool changeable weather conditions. The mileage for this trip is expected to be about 100 km. Students are encouraged to apply for the student subsidy for this trip (download form at the Botanical Society of Otago website.).

The invisible world of floral odours: How plants attract, manipulate and deceive flower visitors

Wednesday 21st of March 2007, 01:00 PM (13 years ago)

Contact: Trish Fleming | trish.fleming@botany.otago.ac.nz | (03) 479 7577

Talk by Dr Andreas Jurgens, Marsden Postdoc, HortResearch and Landcare Research Lincoln, New Zealand. Botany Department Seminar. Many plant species need insects as pollen vectors and floral characters are interpreted as adaptations to the most effective pollinators. Floral odours are found in the vast majority of flowering plants and they play an important role in plant-pollinator interactions. From a plant's perspective volatiles are used to attract, manipulate and even deceit flower visitors for the purpose of pollination. I will illustrate the role of floral volatiles with examples from different plant families that are associated with specific pollinator groups such as the Annonaceae (beetles), Asclepiadaceae (flies), Caryophyllaceae (moths), Ranunculaceae (bees). Some tropical Annonaceae flowers look like fruits and have a fruity aroma to attract small beetles. Stapeliad flowers (Asclepidaceae) emit a noticeable strong and fetid scent resembling that of carrion, urine or dung to attract flies - sometimes without offering any food. In moth-pollinated Silene species (Caryophyllaceae) with pleasant, perfume like odours we find a fine tuned system in which the time of odour emission as well as spatial patterns of the volatiles from a single flower guides flower visitors to the nectar source. In the buttercup family (Ranunculaceae) genera-specific pollen odour patterns may explain the association with pollen-specific bees. Union Street Lecture Theatre, (following the seminar by Dana Dudle at 12 noon).

Maintaining females in gynodioecious populations in Lobelia siphilitica

Wednesday 21st of March 2007, 12:00 PM (13 years ago)

Contact: Trish Fleming | trish.fleming@botany.otago.ac.nz | (03) 479 7577

Genetic, ecological and morphological factors. A talk by Dr Dana Dudle, Biology, DePauw University, Indiana, USA. Union Street Lecture Theatre (upstairs)

Life on the rocks: Research and restoration in Limestone Glades and Abandoned quarries.

Wednesday 14th of March 2007, 05:20 PM (13 years ago)

Contact: Kevin Gould | kevin.gould@botany.otago.ac.nz | (03) 479 9061

Talk by Dana Dudle, DePauw University. The 'limestone belt' in the southern part of Indiana is home to hundreds of abandoned quarries as well as rare ecosystems such as limestone glades. Using a quarry near DePauw's campus as a model I will explore opportunities for research and possible establishment of glade-like communities on abandoned quarries. At the Zoology Benham Building, 346 Great King Street, behind the Zoology car park by the Captain Cook Hotel. Use the main entrance of the Benham Building to get in and go to the Benham Seminar Room, Rm. 215, 2nd floor. Please be prompt as we have to hold the door open.

Maungatua Scenic Reserve

Saturday 10th of March 2007, 08:30 AM (13 years ago)

Contact: Robyn Bridges | robyn.j.bridges@gmail.com | (03) 472 7330 / 021 235 8997

Mt Maungatua rises strikingly above the Taieri Plain. Once it was mostly covered in forest, but this was largely lost around 1300 - 1400 AD and has not re-established. In its place on the upper slopes are snow tussock grasslands in the west and mixed snow tussock-scrub in the east. A few stands of silver beech, Nothofagus menziesii, persist on the most sheltered sites of the western slopes, and it is in most gullies on the moister eastern slopes with mixed podocarps and beech in the larger gullies (Lee Ck and Mill Ck-Waipori Gorge) at either end of the range. On the summit plateau are subalpine scrub dominated by Dracophyllum longifolium, depressions with herb/moor communities, tarns and lichen-rich bogs and tors. Leader: Emeritus Prof. Alan Mark has established permanent plots to monitor change and will have handouts and plant lists available. Rain-date Sunday 11 March. 4WD helpful. Bring warm, windproof clothes.

Why study pollen?

Wednesday 7th of March 2007, 01:00 PM (13 years ago)

Contact: Trish Fleming | trish.fleming@botany.otago.ac.nz | (03) 479 7577

A talk by Professor David Ferguson (William Evans Fellow), Director of Department of Paleontology, University of Vienna, Austria. Union Street Lecture Theatre (upstairs)

Coral reefs and their loss: Why it matters

Wednesday 7th of March 2007, 12:00 PM (13 years ago)

Contact: Trish Fleming | trish.fleming@botany.otago.ac.nz | (03) 479 7577

A talk by Professor Mark Hixon (William Evans Fellow), Department of Zoology, Oregon State University, USA. Union Street Lecture Theatre (upstairs)

Free BSO BBQ

Friday 2nd of March 2007, 12:00 PM (13 years ago)

Contact: David Orlovich | david.orlovich@otago.ac.nz | 0211227230

BBQ to welcome new botany/ecology students and new BSO members. At the front lawn, Botany House Annex, Great King Street (across the road from the main Botany building). Sausage sandwiches and drinks provided free by the Botanical Society of Otago. All BSO members welcome!

Dynamics and regulation of marine fish populations at multiple scales

Wednesday 28th of February 2007, 12:00 PM (13 years ago)

Contact: Trish Fleming | trish.fleming@botany.otago.ac.nz | (03) 479 7577

A talk by Professor Mark Hixon (William Evans Fellow), Department of Zoology, Oregon State University, USA. Union Street Lecture Theatre (upstairs)