Stuckenia pectinata

Key Features

  • This species was previously known as Potamogeton pectinatus.
  • Entirely submersed plant with stems to 2 m long, and dark green, threadlike, sharp-tipped leaves to 5-12 mm long. Leaf bases have a stipule (scale leaf) which wraps around the stem. The inflorescence is a spike to 4 cm long, with flowers at intervals along it.

Distribution and Habitat

  • North and South Islands, from lower Northland to Otago, in still, lowland waters, often brackish and usually near the coast, but also inland.


  • Habitat modification and loss, including hydrological changes.
  • Invasion of aquatic weeds.
  • Eutrophication due to nutrient runoff.

Management Opportunities

  • Survey for new locations.
  • Mark known sites.
  • Protection of habitat.
  • Possum control by poisoning or trapping.
  • Ensure that forest owners in the Volcanic Plateau area are aware of potential habitats and can recognise the species.

Monitoring Options

  • Check existing populations annually.
  • Report new locations to DOC and NZPCN.

Further Information and Support

  • New Zealand Plant Conservation Network (NZPCN).
  • References:
    • Johnson & Brooke (1989). Wetland plants in New Zealand. DSIR Publishing, Wellington