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Brittle Naiad

Photo by Graves Lovell, Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources,

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Common Name: Brittle naiad
Scientific Name: Najas minor
Origin: Europe, Africa and Asia


Brittle naiad is an herbaceous annual that grows in dense clusters. Its leaves have visible serrations and are long, pointed and oppositely arranged on highly branched stems. The plant can reproduce from stem fragments, or from small seeds which grow along its stem.


Brittle naiad is most often found in ponds, lakes, reservoirs and slow-moving streams, typically in water of depths 2-15 ft.


Thick infestations of brittle naiad inhibit the growth of native aquatic plants and can make fishing and boating access difficult. This plant is extremely brittle and has the tendency to break off, increasing the likelihood for it to spread via boats, waterfowl and water currents. Waterfowl readily eat and move this plant from water-body to water-body.


Limited information is available on the management of brittle naiad. Prevention is the most effective control.

Regional Distribution


WNY PRISM Priority

Tier 4 – Local Control

Invasive Species Priorities – Tier Chart

This map shows confirmed observations (green points) submitted to the NYS Invasive Species Database. Absence of data does not necessarily mean absence of the species at that site, but that it has not been reported there. For more information, please visit iMapInvasives.