The Mountain Invasion Research Network now has its own official mascot: a grass! A newly discovered Poa-species got named after our network, carrying the Latin name Poa mireniana. Poa mireniana is a slender stoloniferous grass, with leaves with a broader and coarser character, a longer ligule, and usually more numerous florets than its nearest relatives. For those less accustomed to botanics: it is a quiet elegant and attractive specimen, and we are very proud of it.

Poa mireniana

Some distinctive characteristics of Poa mireniana. (c) Ian Clarke

MIREN got the honour of the naming, as the species was discovered during the MIREN surveys in the Kosciuszko National Park in southeast Australia, where botanists are following the roadside vegetation in the framework of our global survey. There, the species was encountered in steep mountain forests at around 1000 m above sea level, where it baffled the botanists with its undocumented characteristics. It serves as a beautiful illustration of how monitoring work such as that of MIREN not only documents trends in biodiversity, but also unearths new diversity.


Kosciuszko National Park, where the new grass species was discovered during surveys of the native and non-native roadside vegetation. On the picture a ‘snowy hill’ covered in ox-eye daisies, a wide-spread non-native species in the park. (c) K. McDougall

Find all information on our new mascot here.

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