Hydrocharis morsus-ranae 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Liliopsida Alismatales Hydrocharitaceae

Scientific Name: Hydrocharis morsus-ranae L.
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English European Frogbit
French Hydrocharis Grenouillère, Morène
Hydrocharis asarifolia Gray
Hydrocharis asiatica Miq
Hydrocharis batrachyodegma St.Lag.
Hydrocharis cellulosa Buch-Ham
Taxonomic Notes:

There are no significant taxonomic issues associated with this name.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2014
Date Assessed: 2013-02-28
Assessor(s): Lansdown, R.V.
Reviewer(s): Smith, K.
Contributor(s): Rhazi, L. & de Belair, G.
This species is classed as Least Concern as it is widespread and, despite local declines, it has overall stable populations and does not face any major threats.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:

H. morsus-ranae occurs from Algeria, through Europe north to Scandinavia and east through the Altai, the Caucasus and the Middle East to Siberia and Kazakhstan. It has apparently been introduced to parts of Canada and the eastern United States

Countries occurrence:
Albania; Algeria; Austria; Belarus; Belgium; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria; Croatia; Czech Republic; Denmark; Estonia; Finland; France (France (mainland)); Georgia (Abkhaziya, Adzhariya, Gruziya); Germany; Greece (Greece (mainland)); Hungary; Ireland; Kazakhstan; Latvia; Liechtenstein; Lithuania; Luxembourg; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Moldova; Montenegro; Morocco; Netherlands; Norway; Palestinian Territory, Occupied; Poland; Portugal (Portugal (mainland)); Romania; Russian Federation (Central European Russia, Eastern Asian Russia, East European Russia, European Russia, Irkutsk, Kaliningrad, Krasnodar, North European Russia, Northwest European Russia, South European Russia, West Siberia); Serbia; Slovakia; Slovenia; Spain (Spain (mainland)); Sweden; Switzerland; Turkey (Turkey-in-Asia, Turkey-in-Europe); Ukraine (Ukraine (main part)); United Kingdom
Regionally extinct:
Italy (Italy (mainland))
Canada (Ontario, Québec); United States (New York)
Additional data:
Upper elevation limit (metres):500
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:H. morsus-ranae is classed as Critically Endangered in Spain, Endangered in Switzerland and Norway and Vulnerable in the United Kingdom. Otherwise, it is fairly widespread and abundant throughout its range.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:H. morsus-ranae typically occurs in shallow, calcareous, mesotrophic or meso-eutrophic water in the sheltered bays of lakes or in ponds, canals and ditches.

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: There is some trade in H. morsus-ranae for landscape and garden ponds, but this appears to be insufficient to adversely affect the status of wild populations.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

There are no known past, ongoing or future threats to this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: H. morsus-ranae is classed as Critically Endangered in Spain and the Czech Republic, Endangered in Switzerland and Norway and Vulnerable in the United Kingdom. In France, it is protected at regional level in Alsace, Midi-Pyrénées, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, Rhône-Alpes and Limousin. Otherwise, there are no conservation measures in place or needed.

Classifications [top]

5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.4. Wetlands (inland) - Bogs, Marshes, Swamps, Fens, Peatlands
suitability:Suitable  major importance:Yes
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.5. Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha)
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.6. Wetlands (inland) - Seasonal/Intermittent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha)
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.7. Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha)
suitability:Suitable  major importance:Yes
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.8. Wetlands (inland) - Seasonal/Intermittent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha)
suitability:Suitable  major importance:Yes
15. Artificial/Aquatic & Marine -> 15.9. Artificial/Aquatic - Canals and Drainage Channels, Ditches
suitability:Suitable  major importance:No

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education

♦  Pets/display animals, horticulture

Bibliography [top]

Association Tela Botanica. 2000-2008. Le reseau de la botanique francophone. Montpellier Available at:

Association Tela Botanica. 2000–2010. Le reseau de la botanique francophone. Available at:

Castroviejo, S., Aedo, C., Lainz, M., Morales, R., Muñoz Garmendia, F., Nieto Feliner, G. and Paiva, J. (eds). 2010. Flora Iberica. Volume 17. Real Jardín Botaníco, C.S.I.C. Servicio de Publicaciones, Madrid.

Catling, P.M., Mitrow, G., Haber, E., Posluszny, U. and Charlton, W.A. 2003. The biology of Canadian weeds. 124: Hydrocharis morsus-ranae L. Canadian Journal of Plant Science 83(4): 1001-1016.

Cheffings, C.M. and Farrell, L. (eds). 2005. The vascular plant Red Data List for Great Britain. Species status No. 7. Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Peterborough.

Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas (Real Jardin Botanico) and Fundación Biodiversidad (Ministerio de Medio Ambiente). 2009. Anthos. Sistema de informacion sobre las plantas de España. Madrid Available at:

Coste, H. 1980. Flore descriptive et illustrée de la France, de la Corse, et des contrées limitrophes. Albert Blanchard, Paris.

IUCN. 2014. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.1. Available at: (Accessed: 12 June 2014).

Kålås, J.A., Viken, Å. and Bakken, T. (eds). 2006. Norsk Rødliste 2006 – 2006 Norwegian Red List. Artsdatabanken.

Moreno, J.C. (coord.). 2008. Lista Roja 2008 de la Flora Vascular Española. Dirección General de Medio Natural y Política Forestal (Ministerio de Medio Ambiente, y Medio Rural y Marino, y Sociedad Española de Biología de la Conservación de Plantas), Madrid.

Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle (ed). 2003-2010. Inventaire National du Patrimoine Naturel (INPN). Paris Available at:

Naturhistoriska Riksmuseet. 2010. Den virtuella floran. Stockholm Available at:

Pignatti, S. 1982. Flora d'Italia. Vol. 3. Edagricole, Bologna.

Procházka, F. 2001. Black and Red List of Vascular Plants of the Czech Republic. Agency for Nature Conservation and Landscape Protection, Příroda.

Tutin, T.G., Heywood, V.H., Burges, N.A., Valentine, D.H., Walters, S.M. and Webb, D.A. (eds). 1964–1980. Flora Europaea. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

WCSPF. 2010. World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Available at:

Welten, M. and Sutter, H.C.R. 1982. Verbreitungsatlas der Farn- und Blütenpflanzen der Schweiz. Vol. 1. Birkhauser Velag, Basel.

Citation: Lansdown, R.V. 2014. Hydrocharis morsus-ranae. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2014: e.T164128A42387003. . Downloaded on 25 September 2018.
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