Domain D: cool tops

"Like music and art, love of nature is a common language that can transcend political or social boundaries."

- Jimmy Carter.

 
Map of Domain D: cool tops.
Domain D: cool tops.
For explanation of inset see below.
 

Environmental character

Cloudy, wet and windy. Cool temperatures. Thin, leached soils and rock outcrops. Inland this domain occurs approximately between 400-550 metres but on seaward hills it occurs at lower altitudes (around 350 metres). Clearance of forest appears to create an altitudinally depressed montane environment in which succession is retarded. A lower density of wildlife than other domains may contribute to this perceived slowness.

'Natural' ecological character

Domain D subsection

 
Drawing of Domain D subsection.
Domain D subsection.
 

1. Cool tops

Pioneer: tussock herbfield, rich in lichens.

Secondary: single-tier scrubland of cool and moist climate species such as horopito (Pseudowintera colorata), manuka (Leptospermum scoparium), kamahi (Weinmannia racemosa), tree fuchsia/kotukutuku (Fuchsia excorticata), toro.

Mature: two-tier forest (few emergents if any) dominated by kamahi (W.racemosa), with some miro (Podocarpus ferrugineus) and hinau (Elaeocarpus dentaus) on deeper soils.

Continue to Enjoying Porirua's natural heritage or return to Porirua's Ecological Sites Inventory.