Red Beech (Fuscospora fusca)* also known as tawhai raunui (Maori) is a species of southern beech, endemic to New Zealand, where it occurs on both the North Island and South Island. It is the largest beech species in New Zealand. Trees average 24–30 metres in height, with trunks 1.4–2.0 metres in diameter. When mature they have massive crowns, large flanges at the base of the trunk, and root buttresses. Of all the beeches, red beech is least resistant to unfavourable conditions but they are generally found on lower hills and inland valley floors where the soil is fertile and well drained.
New Zealand's beech’ trees all have dry, nut-like seeds which are spread by the wind. All except silver beech will form hybrids wherever they grow together. Beech forests are the largest remaining indigenous forest type in New Zealand, mainly because they dominate mountainous land not generally regarded as the best for agriculture.