Starry Stonewort: An AIS threat

Photo from MN DNR

Photo from MN DNR

Over the past 30 years, the Minnesota DNR has brought invasive species to the attention of the public. This attention has educated public water users on specific species to watch for and how to reduce the spread. A new species of algae has emerged and it provides a greater threat to the health to a body of water than Eurasian watermilfoil and Zebra Mussels. It is Starry Stonewort.

Starry Stonewort

• Forms a dense mat at the water’s surface that inhibits water recreation.

• Will overtake habitat and outcompete native aquatic plants, potentially lowering diversity.

• Provides unsuitable shelter, food and nesting habitat for the native animals.

It is believed to spread from one body of water to another by the unintentional transfer of bulbils, the star-like structures produced by the plant. These fragments are most likely attached to trailered boats, personal watercraft, docks, boat lifts, anchors or any other water-related equipment that was not properly cleaned.

More information (external links)