Global invasive species database

  • General
  • Distribution
  • Impact
  • Management
  • Bibliography
  • Contact
prev
  • Azolla pinnata (right) and A. rubra (left) (Photo: Paul Champion, NIWA)
  • Azolla pinnata in a Waikato (NZ) drain (Photo: R. Wells, NIWA)
  • Lake covered in ferny Azolla (Photo: John Clayton, NIWA)
  • Azolla pond, central Hawkes Bay, NZ (Photo: Paul Champion, NIWA)
next
Common name
mosquito fern (English), ferny azolla (English), water velvet (English)
Synonym
Similar species
Azolla
Summary
Azolla pinnata can spread rapidly, and has the ability to survive on moist soil in and around rivers, ditches, and ponds. It forms dense surface mats, which degrade water quality by reducing oxygen levels, and can interfere with boating, fishing and recreational activities.
Species Description
\"Plants small, 1.5 - 2.5cm long, with a more or less straight main axis with pinnately arranged side branches, progressively longer towards the base, thus roughly triangular in shape, the basal branches themselves becoming pinnate and eventually fragmenting as the main axis decomposes to form new plants. Roots with fine lateral rootlets, having a feathery appearance in the water. Leaves minute, 1 -2mm long, overlapping in 2 ranks, upper lobe green, brown green or reddish, lower lobe translucent brown; minute, short, plae, +/- cylindrical unicellular hairs often present on the upper lobes. When fertile, round sporocarps 1 - 1.5mm wide can be seen on the under side at the bases of the side branches. The leaves often have a maroon-red tinge and the water can appear to be covered by red velvet from the distance. The upper surface of the leaves are totally water-repellant, and if completely submerged the plants quickly refloat with the right side up.\"
Uses
Azolla is useful as a \"soybean plant in rice field\", because it can assimilate atmospheric nitrogen gas owing to the nitrogen fixation by cyanobacteria (blue green alga) living in the cavities located at the lower side of upper (dorsal) lobes of leaf. (Duke)
Habitat Description
It has the ability to survive on moist soil in and around rivers, ditches, and ponds which may allow the plant to survive low water levels and periods of drought. (NC Aquatic Fact Sheet)
Reproduction
Generally it multiplies vegetatively, and by spores. In the right conditions A. pinnata can double its biomass in 5 to 10 days in the field. (Duke)
Nutrition
Azolla species can often grow on nitrogen poor water due to nitrogen fixing ability. However will grow very rapidly in high nitrogen habitats.
Pathway
Possible introduced to New Guinea with cattle.Azolla lives in symbiosis with blue-green algae (cyanobacteria), taking advantage of their ability to fix nitrogen. It is sometimes introduced and used by farmers as a natural fertilizer for this reason. (PIER, 2003)

Principal source: Pacific Islands Ecosystems at Risk, (PIER)

Compiler: IUCN/SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG)

Review:

Publication date: 2010-05-26

Recommended citation: Global Invasive Species Database (2016) Species profile: Azolla pinnata. Downloaded from http://www.iucngisd.org/gisd/species.php?sc=204 on 26-09-2016.

General Impacts
Azolla pinnata can spread very quickly forming dense vegetative masses on areas of still water. This in turn limits light available to other aquatic plants and oxygen used by other aquatic life. It forms dense mats that choke out other species. A. pinnata is on the US noxious weed list. In New Zealand has replaced a native floating fern, Azolla rubra, over most of northern New Zealand. Azolla lives in symbiosis with blue-green algae (cyanobacteria), taking advantage of their ability to fix nitrogen. It is sometimes introduced and used by farmers as a natural fertilizer for this reason.
Management Info
Chemical: Fact sheet on control of Azolla from Queensland, Australia, DNR.

\r\nBiological: There was some success in management of A.pinnata using weevils in South Africa although the study was aimed primarily at Azolla filiculoides.

Countries (or multi-country features) with distribution records for Azolla pinnata
ALIEN RANGE
NATIVE RANGE
  • africa
  • australia
  • china
  • india
  • japan
  • madagascar
  • malaysia
  • papua new guinea
  • philippines
  • south east asia
  • viet nam
Informations on Azolla pinnata has been recorded for the following locations. Click on the name for additional informations.
Lorem Ipsum
Location Status Invasiveness Occurrence Source
Details of Azolla pinnata in information
Status
Invasiveness
Arrival date
Occurrence
Source
Introduction
Species notes for this location
Location note
Management notes for this location
Impact
Mechanism:
Outcome:
Ecosystem services:
Impact information
Azolla pinnata can spread very quickly forming dense vegetative masses on areas of still water. This in turn limits light available to other aquatic plants and oxygen used by other aquatic life. It forms dense mats that choke out other species. A. pinnata is on the US noxious weed list. In New Zealand has replaced a native floating fern, Azolla rubra, over most of northern New Zealand. Azolla lives in symbiosis with blue-green algae (cyanobacteria), taking advantage of their ability to fix nitrogen. It is sometimes introduced and used by farmers as a natural fertilizer for this reason.
Red List assessed species 0:
Locations
NEW ZEALAND
Mechanism
[1] Competition
Outcomes
[1] Environmental Species - Population
  • [1] Reduces/inhibits the growth of other species
Management information
Chemical: Fact sheet on control of Azolla from Queensland, Australia, DNR.

\r\nBiological: There was some success in management of A.pinnata using weevils in South Africa although the study was aimed primarily at Azolla filiculoides.

Bibliography
32 references found for Azolla pinnata

Managment information
Champion, P. Clayton, J. and Rowe, D. 2002. Alien Invaders Lake Managers� Handbook. Ministry for the Environment.
Summary: Available from: http://www.mfe.govt.nz/publications/water/lm-alien-invaders-jun02.pdf [Accessed 3 February 2005]
Champion, P.D.; Clayton, J.S. 2000. Border control for potential aquatic weeds. Stage 1. Weed risk model. Science for Conservation 141. .
Summary: This report is the first stage in a three-stage development of a Border Control Programme for aquatic plants that have the potential to become ecological weeds in New Zealand.
Available from: http://www.doc.govt.nz/upload/documents/science-and-technical/sfc141.pdf [Accessed 13 June 2007]
Champion, P.D.; Clayton, J.S. 2001. Border control for potential aquatic weeds. Stage 2. Weed risk assessment. Science for Conservation 185. 30 p.
Summary: This report is the second stage in the development of a Border Control Programme for aquatic plants that have the potential to become ecological weeds in New Zealand. Importers and traders in aquatic plants were surveyed to identify the plant species known or likely to be present in New Zealand. The Aquatic Plant Weed Risk Assessment Model was used to help assess the level of risk posed by these species. The report presents evidence of the various entry pathways and considers the impact that new invasive aquatic weed species may have on vulnerable native aquatic species and communities.
Available from: http://www.doc.govt.nz/upload/documents/science-and-technical/SFC185.pdf [Accessed 13 June 2007]
Cowie, R. H. 2001. Can snails ever be effective and safe biocontrol agents?. International Journal of Pest Management 47: 23-40.
Summary: Discusses the use of land and freshwater snails as biological control agents against other snails and against aquatic weeds. Recommends snails not be used for biocontrol.
Daehler, C. C. and Strong, D. R. 1996. Status, predication, and prevention of introduced cordgrass Spartina spp. invasions in Pacific estuaries, U.S.A.. Biological Conservation 78: 51-58.
Summary: This paper uses Spartina species characteristics to predict which Spartina species will invade specific sites along the U.S. Pacific coast. Mean tidal ranges were then used to predict the extent of spatial spread of a Spartina sp. after colonization.
PIER (Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk), 2003. Azolla pinnata
Summary: Ecology, synonyms, common names, distributions (Pacific as well as global), management and impact information.
Available from: http://www.hear.org/pier/species/azolla_pinnata.htm [Accessed 23 October 2003]
General information
Bury, R. B. and Whelan, J. A. 1984. Ecology and management of the bullfrog. U.S. Dept. of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service, Resource Publication 155, Washington, D.C.
Summary: A comprehensive summary and critical review of information on the biology of the bullfrog related to its ecology, status, culture and management. Literature through 1982 is included.
CONABIO. 2008. Sistema de informaci�n sobre especies invasoras en M�xico. Especies invasoras - Plantas. Comisi�n Nacional para el Conocimiento y Uso de la Biodiversidad. Fecha de acceso.
Summary: English:
The species list sheet for the Mexican information system on invasive species currently provides information related to Scientific names, family, group and common names, as well as habitat, status of invasion in Mexico, pathways of introduction and links to other specialised websites. Some of the higher risk species already have a direct link to the alert page. It is important to notice that these lists are constantly being updated, please refer to the main page (http://www.conabio.gob.mx/invasoras/index.php/Portada), under the section Novedades for information on updates.
Invasive species - Plants is available from: http://www.conabio.gob.mx/invasoras/index.php/Especies_invasoras_-_Plantas [Accessed 30 July 2008]
Spanish:
La lista de especies del Sistema de informaci�n sobre especies invasoras de m�xico cuenta actualmente con informaci�n aceca de nombre cient�fico, familia, grupo y nombre com�n, as� como h�bitat, estado de la invasi�n en M�xico, rutas de introducci�n y ligas a otros sitios especializados. Algunas de las especies de mayor riesgo ya tienen una liga directa a la p�gina de alertas. Es importante resaltar que estas listas se encuentran en constante proceso de actualizaci�n, por favor consulte la portada (http://www.conabio.gob.mx/invasoras/index.php/Portada), en la secci�n novedades, para conocer los cambios.
Especies invasoras - Plantas is available from: http://www.conabio.gob.mx/invasoras/index.php/Especies_invasoras_-_Plantas [Accessed 30 July 2008]
Duke, J.A. Innovative Biological Technologies for Lesser Developed Countries.
Summary: Includes section on potential use of Azolla Pinnata as a fertiliser.
Available from: www.wws.princeton.edu/cgi-bin/byteserv.prl/ ~ota/disk2/1985/8512/851214.PDF [Accessed 23 October 2003].
Fabres, G. and Brown, W. L. Jr. 1978. The recent introduction of the pest ant Wasmannia auropunctata into New Caledonia. Journal of the Australian Entomological Society 17: 139-142.
ITIS (Integrated Taxonomic Information System), 2004. Online Database Azolla pinnata
Summary: An online database that provides taxonomic information, common names, synonyms and geographical jurisdiction of a species. In addition links are provided to retrieve biological records and collection information from the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) Data Portal and bioscience articles from BioOne journals.
Available from: http://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=181820 [Accessed December 31 2004]
Kay, S. and Hoyle, S. 2000. Aquatic Weed Fact Sheet - Azolla pinnata. NC State University
Kupferberg, S. J. 1997. Bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana) invasion of a California river: the role of larval competition. Ecology 78(6): 1736-1751.
Summary: Native yellow-legged frogs, Rana boylii, were almost an order of magnitude less abundant in reaches where bullfrogs were well established. Competition from large overwintering bullfrog larvae significantly decreased survivorship and growth of native tadpoles.
Lafferty, K. D. and Page, C. J. 1997. Predation on the endangered tidewater goby, Eucyclogobius newberryi, by the introduced African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, with notes on the frog s parasites. Copeia 1997: 589-592.
Lake, 2000. Restoration of Lakes and Wetlands. India Institute of Science.
Summary: A paper on the productivity of A. pinnata and of the effects of different environmental factors on its productivity.
Available from: http://ces.iisc.ernet.in/energy/water/proceed/proceedings_text/section2/paper3/section2paper3.htm [Accessed 23 October 2003]
MacIsaac, H. J. 1996. Potential abiotic and biotic impacts of zebra mussels on the inland waters of North America. Amer. Zool. 36: 287-299.
Mackie, G. L., Gibbons, W. N., Muncaster, B. W. and Gray, I. M. 1989. The zebra mussel, Dreissena polymorpha: a synthesis of European experiences and a preview for North America. Water Resources Branch, Great Lakes Section, Ontario Ministry of the Environmen
Summary: Bibliographic review of biology, taxonomy, life history, anatomy, distribution, and impacts of zebra mussels, drawing from European literature. An annotated bibliography of European literature is included.
McCoid, M. J. 1985. An observation of reproductive behavior in a wild population of African clawed frogs, Xenopus laevis, in California. Calif. Fish Game 71: 245-246.
McCoid, M. J. and Fritts, T. H. 1980. Notes on the diet of a feral population of Xenopus laevis (Pipidae) in California. SWest. Nat. 25: 272-275.
McCoid, M. J. and Fritts, T. H. 1980. Observations of feral populations of Xenopus laevis (Pipidae) in Southern California. Bull. Sth. Calif. Acad. Sci. 79: 82-86.
McCoid, M. J. and Fritts, T. H. 1989. Growth and fatbody cycles in feral populations of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis (Pipidae), in California with comments on reproduction. SWest. Nat. 34: 499-505.
McCoid, M. J. and Fritts, T. H. 1993. Speculations on colonizing success of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis (Pipidae). California. S. Afr. J. Zool. 28: 59-61.
McCoid, M. J., Pregill, G. K. and Sullivan, R. M. 1993. Possible decline of Xenopus populations in southern California. Herpet. Rev. 24: 29-30.
McMahon, R. F. 1996. The physiological ecology of the zebra mussel, Dreissena polymorpha, in North America and Europe. Amer. Zool. 36: 339-363.
Nalepa, T. F. and Schloesser, D. (eds.) 1993. Zebra mussels: biology, impacts, and control. Lewis Publishers, Boca Raton, FL.
Summary: Series of chapters on the biology, ecology, and genetics of zebra mussels in North America, case histories of their impacts on public facilities, and methods developed for control.
Ricciardi, A., Neves, R. J. and Rasmussen, J. B. 1998. Impending extinctions of North American freshwater mussels (Unionoida) following the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) invasion. J. Anim. Ecol. 67: 613-619.
Willner, G. R., Chapman, J. A. and Pursley, D. 1979. Reproduction, physiological responses, food habits, and abundance of nutria on Maryland marshes. Wildlife Monograph 65: 43.
Summary: Study on feeding strategies, population dynamics and adaption of coypus.
Contact
The following 16 contacts offer information an advice on Azolla pinnata
Casper,
Gary S.
Rana catesbeiana
Organization:
Milwaukee Public Museum
Email:
Address:
800 W Wells St, Milwaukee, WI 53233 USA
Phone:
+1 414 2782766��
Fax:
+1 414 2786100��
Crayon,
John J.
Rana catesbeiana
Organization:
USGS-Western Ecological Research Center
Address:
Department of Biology, University of California, Riverside, California 92521 USA
Phone:
+1 909 7869634
Fax:
Dudley,
Tom
Organization:
Marine Science Institute University of California Santa Barbara & Natural Resource & Environmental Sciences University of Nevada, Reno
Address:
Noble Hall 1128; Lab: Noble 1250
Phone:
805-893-2911
Fax:
Jennings,
Mark R.
Rana catesbeiana
Organization:
California Academy of Sciences
Address:
Department of Herpetology CAS, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, California, 94118 USA
Phone:
+1 530 7532727
Fax:
+1 530 7532727
Johnson,
Eric R. R. L.
Imperata cylindrica
Organization:
University of Florida
Address:
University of Florida 2183 McCarty Hall, PO Box 110500 Gainesville, FL 32611 United States
Phone:
+1 352 3927512
Fax:
Koop,
Anthony L.
Ardisia elliptica
Organization:
University of Miami
Address:
Department of Biology; P.O. Box 249118; Coral Gables, Florida 33124-0421; USA
Phone:
+1 305 2845364
Fax:
+1 305 2843039
MacDonald,
Greg
Imperata cylindrica, Hydrilla verticillata, Eupatorium capillifolium
Organization:
University of Florida
Address:
University of Florida 304 Newell Hall, PO Box 110300 Gainesville, FL 32611 United States
Phone:
+1 352 3921811 x214
Fax:
Marsden,
J. Ellen
zebra mussel, round goby, sea lamprey
Organization:
University of Vermont
Address:
School of Natural Resources, Burlington, VT 05405 USA.
Phone:
+1 802 6560684
Fax:
+1 802 6568683
Onokpise,
Oghenekome (Kome)
Imperata cylindrica
Organization:
Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU)
Address:

Phone:
+1 850 5612217
Fax:
Patten,
Kim
Spartina anglica, Spatina alterniflora - United States
Organization:
Washington State University - Long Beach
Address:
2907 Pioneer Road, Long Beach WA, 98631
Phone:
Fax:
Raymond,
Rainbolt
feral goats, invasive species
Organization:
Oregon Dept. Fish and Wildlife
Email:
Address:
Wildlife Division, P.O. Box 59, Portland, Oregon 97207, USA
Phone:
+1 503 8725260
Fax:
+1 503 8725269
Rodda,
Gordon
U.S. (off Guam)
Organization:
U.S. Dept. of Interior, USGS
Address:
4512 McMurry Ave., Fort Collins, CO 80525, U.S.A.
Phone:
+1 970 2269471
Fax:
+1 970 2269230
Scott Jr.,
Norman J.
Rana catesbeiana
Organization:
USGS-Western Ecological Research Center
Address:
Piedras Blancas Field Station, P.O. Box 70, San Simeon, California� 93452 USA
Phone:
+1 805 9273893�
Fax:
+1 805 9273308
Sredl,
Michael J.
Rana catesbeiana
Organization:
Arizona Game & Fish Dept
Address:
2221 W Greenway Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85023-4399 USA
Phone:
+1 602 7893515
Fax:
+1 602 7893926
Szito,
Andras (Andy)
Stored product pests, including pest Trogoderma species, with particular interest in taxonomy and identification
Website
Organization:
Department of Agriculture Western Australia, Plant Research and Development Services
Address:
3 Baron-Hay Court, South Perth, WA 6151, Australia
Phone:
(+61 8) 9368 3248, 9368 3965
Fax:
(+61 8) 9368 3223, 9474 2840
Webb,
Kim
Eriocheir sinensis - USA, San Fransisco Bay area
Organization:
US Fish & Wildlife Service
Address:
4001 North Wilson Way, Stockton, CA 95205, USA.
Phone:
+1 209 9466400 x311
Fax:
+1 209 9466355