Invasives: Myriophyllum aquaticum

Discussion in 'Plants: Conservation' started by Daniel Mosquin, Dec 18, 2007.

  1. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Esteemed Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    I'm wondering if Myriophyllum aquaticum aka parrot's feather is "on the invasive radar" locally - I did a search for the scientific name and British Columbia, but didn't come up with much other than a few reports of it. The reason I'm asking is that someone spotted (what seems to me to be) a population of these in Burnaby, and she asked what to do about it... and I don't have an answer.
     
  2. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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  3. dawnh

    dawnh Member

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    It is on the invasive radar, mostly because of the sharp eyes of Rose and Brian Klinkenberg who have noticed its increased presence in Richmond. The bad news is that it is a really nasty aquatic invasive that spreads quickly and seriously alters the physical and chemical characteristics of lakes, ponds and streams. It shades out algae that serve as the basis of the aquatic food web. And it's prime habitat for mosquito larvae.
    It's also very difficult to control. Its deep rhizomes make mechanical methods a short-term bandaid at most. Some herbicides do work to control (but not eliminate), and can also affect native aquatic flora and fauna. And that control comes at a cost: In Washington, the Longview Diking District estimates that it spends $50,000 a year on parrot feather control in drainage ditches.
    The hope is that an effective biocontrol will eventually be found for this species. In the meantime, we can all help prevent the spread of Myriophyllum aquaticum by ensuring that we don't dump our aquatic plants or aquarium plants into local water sources. Sometimes "recycling" can be a negative.
     
  4. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Bear in mind there are other species of Myriophyllum, which may be native where you are (e.g. Britain has three native species, M. alterniflorum, M. spicatum, M. verticillatum). So check identification before hauling it out!
     
  5. NiftyNiall

    NiftyNiall Active Member 10 Years

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    Possibly this interloper? Myriophyllum pinnatum (Walt.) B.S.P.
    cutleaf watermilfoil; green parrot`s-feather; Green Parrot's-feather. Thanks probably to the aquarium crowd, it is sold locally for the purpose, thanks for nothing Ag.Can.;DFO.

    One of the newest described, of the 9 that we now have. I see that Frank Lomer, described this one as being found in Port Coquitlam. I have seen it in the Pitt River, around the Widgeon Slough, area and downstream where the Coquitlam River, meets the Fraser, and this was a few years ago now. Did not appear to be a huge problem, yet..
     
  6. WesternWilson

    WesternWilson Active Member 10 Years

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    Is this the same plant as the infamous Myriophyllum spicatum, Eurasian Water Milfoil, that the BC government spent so much time and money attempting to eradicate and control? It made an horrific mess in the Okanagan and was inadvertently transported all over the province by recreational boaters
     

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