Paschalococos disperta Dransfield (1991)

Rapa Nui palm, Easter Island palm



Taxonomy & Nomenclature

Synonym/s: Jubaea disperta


Conservation Status

Extinct (Prebble & Dowe, 2008)

Last record: 1520–1660 AD (Prebble et al., 2012)



Easter Island (= Rapa Nui)


Biology & Ecology










Original scientific description:

Dransfield, J. (1991). Paschalococos disperta J. Dransfield, gen. et sp. nov., pp. 64-65. In: Zizka, G. (ed.). Flowering plants of Easter Island. Palmarum Hortus Francofurtensis, Scientific Reports 3, Frankfurt am Main.


Other references:

Bowdery, Doreen. (2015). An enigma revisited: identification of palm phytoliths extracted from the 1983 Rapa Nui, Rano Kao2 core. Vegetation History and Archaeobotany 24(4): 455-466.

Delhon, Claire and Orliac, Catherine. (2007). The vanished palm trees of Easter Island: new radiocarbon and phytolith data, pp. 97-110. In: The Gotland Papers. Selected Papers from the VII International Conference on Easter Island and the Pacific. Migration, Identity, and Cultural Heritage (eds P. Wallin and H. Martrinsson-Wallin). Gotland University Press, Sweden.

Dransfield, John et al. (1984). A recently extinct palm from Easter Island. Nature 312: 750-752. [Abstract]

Flenley, J. R., King, S. M., Jackson, J. and Chew, C. (1991). The late Quaternary vegetational and climatic history of Easter Island. Journal of Quaternary Science 6: 85-115.

Hunt, Terry. (2007). Rethinking Easter Island’s ecological catastrophe. J. Archaeol. Sci. 34: 485-502.

Mann, D., Edwards, J., Chase, J., Beck, W., Reanier, R., Mass, M., Finney, B. and Loret, J. (2008). Drought, vegetation change, and human history on Rapa Nui (Isla de Pascua, Easter Island). Quaternary Research 69(1): 16-28.

Orliac, Catherine and Orliac, Michel. (2008). Extinct flora of Easter Island, pp. 197-208. In: Di Piazza, Anne, Pearthree, Erick and Sand, Christophe (eds.). At the Heart of Ancient Societies: French Contributions to Pacific Archaeology. Les Cahiers de l'Archéologie en Nouvelle-Calédonie.

Prebble, Matthew and Dowe, John L. (2008). The late Quaternary decline and extinction of palms on Pacific islands. Quaternary Science Reviews 27(27-28): 2546-2567.

Prebble, Matthew et al. (2012). Forest clearance and agricultural expansion on Rapa, Austral Archipelago, French Polynesia. The Holocene 23(2): 179-196.

Rull, Valentí. (2020). The deforestation of Easter island. Biological Reviews 95(1): 124-141.

Walter, Kerry S. and Gillett, Harriet J. (eds.). (1998). 1997 IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants. Compiled by the World Conservation Monitoring Centre. Gland, Switzerland & Cambridge, UK: IUCN – The World Conservation Union. lxiv + 862 pp.

Zizka, G. (1991). Flowering plants of Easter Island. Palmarum Hortus Francofurtensis, Scientific Reports 3: 1-108. Palmengarten, Frankfurt am Main.


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