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Species profile—Hydrocharis dubia (frogbit)


Plantae (plants) → Equisetopsida (land plants) → HydrocharitaceaeHydrocharis dubia (frogbit)

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Species details

Plantae (plants)
Equisetopsida (land plants)
Scientific name
Hydrocharis dubia (Blume) Backer
Common name
WildNet taxon ID
Conservation significant
Wetland status
Wetland Indicator Species
Pest status
Environmental Weed
Hydrocharis dubia is a floating or rooted freshwater herb. It has leaf stalks up to 12cm long attached to the leaf blades. The leaves are thick, shiny, broadly ovate to round in shape and measure 2-7cm long and wide, and have a spongy cushion of tissue on the underside.
The flowers are erect, aerial and conspicuous and 2-3 cm across. The petals are white or pale yellow with a deeper yellow throat. The male flowers have 12 stamens and the female flowers have three staminodes (sterile stamens). The berry-like fruits are 5-10mm long and mature underwater. The seeds are tuberculate. (Aston 1973; Cook & Luond 1982; TSSC 2008; Jacobs 2009).
Hydrocharis dubia is found near Townsville and Charters Towers in north-eastern Queensland and in the greater Brisbane area of south-east Queensland. The northern populations are of recent origin. The species also occurs in north-eastern NSW, New Guinea, India and Asia (Cook & Luond 1982; Herbrecs 2008; Jacobs 2009).
Distributional limits
-19.5234482, 145.5755655
-28.0817376, 153.5010596
Range derivation
Range derived from extent of the taxon's verified records
Hydrocharis dubia inhabits dams, lakes and slow moving streams. It may be floating in deep water or be rooted in shallows by the edges of calm water (Stephens & Dowling 2002; Herbrecs 2008).
Hydrocharis dubia is generally found in crowded situations in habitat and often sheltered by other aquatic vegetation. It may form a dense mass, and increases by runners. (Herbrecs 2008).
Hydrocharis dubia flowers from spring to autumn. It appears to be insect pollinated and the fruit mature underwater (Cronk & Hennessay 2001).
Contributors: Ailsa Holland 11/10/2009; Danielle Hansen 16/10/2009
Aston, H.I. (1973). Aquatic Plants of Australia. Melbourne University Press, Melbourne.
Cronk, J.K. & Hennessy, M.S. (2001). Wetland Plants, Biology and Ecology. Lewis Publishers, Washington D.C.
Cook, C.D.K. & Luond, R. (1982). A revision of the genus Hydrocharis (Hydrocharitaceae). Aquatic Botany 14, 177-204.
Herbrecs (2008). Hydrocharis dubia, in BriMapper version 2.12. Queensland Herbarium. Accessed 03/10/2008.
Jacobs, S.W.L. (2009). Hydrocharis dubia, in PlantNET - The Plant Information Network System of Botanic Gardens Trust, Sydney, Australia (version 2). Accessed 16/09/2009.
Stephens, K.M. & Dowling, R.M. (2002). Wetland Plants of Queensland, A Field Guide, CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood.
Threatened Species Scientific Committee (2008). Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Hydrocharis dubia. [Online]. Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts, Canberra. Accessed 03/10/2008.
Profile author
Danielle Hansen (16/10/2009)

Other resources

Data source

This profile data is sourced from the QLD Wildlife Data API using the Get species by ID function used under CC-By 4.0.

This information is sourced from the WildNet database managed by the Queensland Department of Environment and Science.

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Last updated
8 March 2022