Callitriche palustris 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Magnoliopsida Lamiales Callitrichaceae

Scientific Name: Callitriche palustris L.
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Narrow-fruited Water-starwort , Vernal water-starwort
French Callitriche des Marais
Callitriche verna L.
Callitriche vernalis Koch
Taxonomic Source(s): The Plant List. 2013. The Plant List Version 1.1. Available at: (Accessed: July 2016).
Taxonomic Notes:

C. palustris is very variable throughout its range. In Europe, this variation is mainly represented by differences in the width and distribution of the wing and there are a few consistent variants in Europe which may merit description and for which more information is needed. Material from Corsica and the Pyrenees has ellipsoid fruits 0.9–1.1 x 0.6 mm, wingless or narrowly winged at the base and apex (Schotsman 1967). In some material from Russia the base of the mericarp twists outward, resembling C. peploides Nutt. In Asia there are additional differences in reproductive characters, so that five races can be recognised (Lansdown 2006). While occasional plants from eastern Europe are winged from base to apex and the wing is broader than in other populations (Schotsman 1967); these may represent the western extreme of populations of C. palustris var. elegans (Petrov) Y.L. Chang.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2015-01-08
Assessor(s): Lansdown, R.V.
Reviewer(s): Bilz, M.
This species is classed as Least Concern as it is widespread with stable populations and does not face any major threats.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:C. palustris has a circumboreal distribution, from Europe east through Russia, the Caucasus, the Himalayas and Mongolia, to China, the Russian far east, the Korean Peninsula and Japan. In North America it occurs more or less throughout apart from extreme northern Canada and the south-eastern United States. It occurs throughout Europe, except for the Mediterranean basin and parts of France, from Iceland and Finland south to the Pyrenees and Apennines and east throughout Russia, with isolated populations in the mountains of Corsica.
Countries occurrence:
Austria; Bangladesh; Belarus; Belgium; Bhutan; Bulgaria; Canada (British Columbia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland I, Northwest Territories, Ontario, Prince Edward I., Québec, Saskatchewan, Yukon); China (Anhui, Fujian, Guangdong, Heilongjiang, Jiangxi, Jilin, Nei Mongol, Qinghai, Sichuan, Tibet [or Xizang], Yunnan, Zhejiang); Czech Republic; Denmark; Estonia; Finland; France (Corsica, France (mainland)); Germany; Greenland; Hong Kong; Hungary; Iceland; India (Himachal Pradesh, Jammu-Kashmir, Sikkim); Indonesia (Sumatera); Ireland; Italy (Italy (mainland)); Japan (Hokkaido, Honshu, Kyushu, Nansei-shoto); Korea, Republic of; Latvia; Liechtenstein; Lithuania; Malaysia (Sabah); Moldova; Nepal; Netherlands; Norway; Pakistan; Poland; Romania; Russian Federation (Central Asian Russia, Central European Russia, East European Russia, European Russia, Kaliningrad, Kamchatka, North European Russia, Northwest European Russia, Primoryi, Sakhalin, South European Russia); Serbia; Slovakia; Slovenia; Svalbard and Jan Mayen; Sweden; Switzerland; Taiwan, Province of China (Taiwan, Province of China (main island)); Turkmenistan; Ukraine (Krym, Ukraine (main part)); United Kingdom; United States (Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, Wyoming); Viet Nam
Additional data:
Upper elevation limit (metres):5100
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Throughout most of it range, this species is abundant with stable populations.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:C. palustris occurs in a range of habitats, including wet ruts on woodland rides, turloughs, lakes, river margins, and reservoirs. It appears to be strongly associated with water with a pH of 7–8 in oligotrophic habitats (Schotsman 1967). It seems to occur mainly in habitats where summer water levels drop to expose broad expanses of bare mud, but at higher altitudes and in Fennoscandia it may grow in more permanently wet habitats. It occurs from sea level in central and northern Europe to 2600m in the Alps and probably reaches the highest altitude of any Callitriche species in Europe. In lowland parts of Europe outside Fennoscandia it appears likely that C. palustris is most frequent in the active or historic flood-plains of large river systems. It often occurs with other Callitriche species, such as C. brutia vars brutia and hamulata, C. platycarpa and C. stagnalis. In the lowlands it tends to occur mainly with other species typical of ephemeral pools and the draw-down zones of large lakes, such as Agrostis stolonifera, Alopecurus aequalis, A. geniculatus, Cyperus fuscus, Eleocharis ovata, Gnaphalium uliginosum, Juncus bufonius, J. bulbosus, Limosella aquatica, Lythrum hyssopifolia, L. portula, Montia fontana, Persicaria hydropiper, P. minor, Plantago major, Ranunculus flammula, Rorippa palustris, R. sylvestris, Rumex maritimus and Stellaria uliginosa. At higher altitudes it has been recorded with Eleocharis acicularis, Ranunculus reptans, R. trichophyllus, Rorippa islandica and Sparganium angustifolium and in Fennoscandia with species such as Crassula aquatica, Elatine hydropiper, E. triandra and Subularia aquatica.

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Callitriche species are occasionally sold under this name for horticulture.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no known significant past, ongoing or future threats to this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no conservation measures in place and none needed.

Citation: Lansdown, R.V. 2016. Callitriche palustris. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T164452A69585303. . Downloaded on 16 October 2018.
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