Myriophyllum spicatum

Scope: Pan-Africa

Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Magnoliopsida Haloragales Haloragaceae

Scientific Name: Myriophyllum spicatum
Species Authority: L.
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Spiked Water-milfoil, Eurasian Water Milfoil
Myriophyllum montanum Martrin-Donos

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern (Regional assessment) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2009-05-05
Assessor(s): Ghogue, J.-P.
Reviewer(s): Diop, F.N., Ali, M.M. & Smith, K.G.
Widespread species with no known major widespread threats. Listed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Almost ubiquitous in the northern hemisphere; frequent in northern and southern Africa but rare in the tropics.

In Western Africa there is a poor occurrence of the species. Recorded only from Cameroon In North Africa it is introduced in Egypt, but native in Lybia, Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco. Also recorded from North Eastern Africa in Sudan (Widespread - Lake Nubia - Darfur, Jebel Murra), Ethiopia, and Eritrea.

In Southern Africa, it is found in Namibia, Botswana, and South Africa (Limpopo, North West, Gauteng, Mpumalanga, Free State, KwaZulu-Natal, Northern Cape, Western Cape, Eastern Cape).
Countries occurrence:
Algeria; Botswana; Cameroon; Eritrea; Ethiopia; Libya; Malawi; Malaysia; Morocco; Namibia; South Africa; Sudan; Tanzania, United Republic of; Tunisia; Zambia; Zimbabwe
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species is a very common invasive aquatic macrophyte.
Current Population Trend: Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This Perennial Hydrophyte occurs submerged in permanent still and flowing water and even found in brackish conditions. M. spicatum occurs in lakes, rivers, streams, canals, ditches. It prefers alkaline (hard water) water systems with high dissolved inorganic carbon, nitrate, nitrite, and pH and in hydrosoil with high phosphat and organic matter contents.

North-eastern Africa: Lakes, rivers, streams, canal, ditches. M. spicatum occurs in alkaline (hard water) water systems with high dissolved inorganic carbon, nitrate, nitrite, and pH and in hydrosoil with high phosphatse and organic matter contents.
Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no major threats to this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Wetlands protection and conservation is generally recommended.

Classifications [top]

1. Forest -> 1.8. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Swamp
suitability: Marginal  
4. Grassland -> 4.6. Grassland - Subtropical/Tropical Seasonally Wet/Flooded
suitability: Marginal  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.2. Wetlands (inland) - Seasonal/Intermittent/Irregular Rivers/Streams/Creeks
suitability: Marginal  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.4. Wetlands (inland) - Bogs, Marshes, Swamps, Fens, Peatlands
suitability: Marginal  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.5. Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha)
suitability: Marginal  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.6. Wetlands (inland) - Seasonal/Intermittent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha)
suitability: Marginal  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.7. Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha)
suitability: Marginal  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.8. Wetlands (inland) - Seasonal/Intermittent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha)
suitability: Marginal  
15. Artificial/Aquatic & Marine -> 15.2. Artificial/Aquatic - Ponds (below 8ha)
suitability: Marginal  
1. Land/water protection -> 1.1. Site/area protection

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

♦  Pets/display animals, horticulture
 Local : ✓ 

♦  Research
 Local : ✓ 

Bibliography [top]

Pan-Africa freshwater assessment references. Currently, full citations for references used in the Pan-Africa biodiversity assessments are unavailable on the Red List web site. These will be added to the site in 2011. We apologize for any inconvenience this causes.

IUCN. 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2010.3). Available at: (Accessed: 2 September 2010).

Citation: Ghogue, J.-P. 2010. Myriophyllum spicatum. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T164481A5887638. . Downloaded on 29 November 2015.
Disclaimer: To make use of this information, please check the <Terms of Use>.
Feedback: If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please provide us with feedback so that we can correct or extend the information provided