Elodea canadensis Michx.

English Canadian waterweed, pondweed ISEIA: A3 – Black List
Lëtzebuergesch Kanadesch Waasserpescht EASIN
Français Élodée du Canada Wikipedia: Wikipedia - English - Canadian waterweed Wikipedia - Français - Élodée du Canada Wikipedia - Deutsch - Kanadische Wasserpest Wikipedia - Nederlands - Brede waterpest
Deutsch Kanadische Wasserpest Wikispecies: Wikispecies - Elodea canadensis
Nederlands Brede waterpest Back to the list of neophytes

Report the species

Report Elodea canadensis to the National Museum of Natural History.

Brief description

Elodea canadensis Michx. is an aquatic plant that thrives in a variety of freshwater habitats, from still to slow-flowing systems and from very shallow to deep waters. It is most frequent in clear, nutrient-rich and alkaline waters. Elodea aggressively invaded the waterways of Europe in the 19th Century (Branquart et al. 2010).

Importance and distribution in Luxembourg

Distribution map of Elodea canadensis Michx. in Luxembourg. Data source: Recorder-Lux & iNaturalist, 2019-10-19.

Elodea canadensis Michx. was introduced around 1875 in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg in 2 ponds between Itzig, Contern and Scheidhof. In the following years, it was found in Imbringen (1883), Meysembourg (1886), Schrassig (1902), Diekirch (1906), Birelergrund (1908) and Bissen (1909). It has become quite common in our regions and can be observed in both standing and river waters (Diederich 1984: 38).

The oldest herbarium specimen in the Museum was collected in 1883 by Jean Feltgen (1833-1904) in standing water in the meadows of Imbringen (Specimen № 629a MNHNL 2000-). 

By now the Canadian waterweed is widely spread throughout the country, 172 records of the species are listed in the MNHNL-mdata online portal (MNHNL & iNaturalist 2019).

The North-American plant Elodea canadensis was introduced to Europe around 1835 and quickly invaded the fresh waters of much of the continent. However, this expansion seems to have stopped or even reversed today, and is tending to be replaced by Elodea nuttallii (Planch.) H. St. John (Lambinon & Verloove 2012: 790, 791).

Risk assessment

ISEIA protocol: A3 (3+3+3+3) = Black List (Ries et al. 2013: 18).


  • Branquart, E., I. Stiers, L. Triest, S. Vanderhoeven, W. Van Landuyt, F. Van Rossum, F. Verloove, 2010. Harmonia database: Elodea canadensis Michx.. Harmonia version 1.2, Belgian Forum on Invasive Species. URL: http://ias.biodiversity.be [accessed on 2019-10-09]
  • Diederich, P., 1984. Les monocotylédones aquatiques (excl. Potamogeton s.l.) du Grand-Duché de Luxembourg. Dumortiera 29-30: 34-41. [PDF 5 MB].
  • Lambinon J. & F. Verloove, 2012. Nouvelle flore de la Belgique, du grand-duché de Luxembourg, du Nord de la France et des régions voisines. Sixième édition. Avec la collaboration de L. Delvosalle, B. Toussaint, D. Geerinck, I. Hoste, F. Van Rossum, B. Cornier, R. Schumacker, A. Vanderpoorten et H. Vannerom. Jardin botanique national de Belgique, Meise. CXXXIX + 1195 pp. ISBN : 9789072619884.
  • MNHNL, 2000-. Elodea canadensis Michx. in Recorder-Lux, database on the natural heritage of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Musée national d’histoire naturelle, Luxembourg. URL: https://mdata.mnhn.lu [Accessed 2019-09-05]
  • MNHNL & iNaturalist, 2019. Elodea canadensis Michx. in MNHNL-mdata, online portal combining species observation from Recorder-Lux and iNaturalist. National Museum of Natural History, Luxembourg. URL: https://mdata.mnhn.lu [Accessed 2019-09-06]
  • Ries, C., Y. Krippel, M. Pfeiffenschneider & S. Schneider, 2013. Environmental impact assessment and black, watch and alert list classification after the ISEIA Protocol of non-native vascular plant species in Luxembourg. Bull. Soc. Nat. luxemb. 114: 15-21. [PDF 652 KB]

Suggested citation of this webpage

Ries, C. & M. Pfeiffenschneider (Eds.), 2019. Elodea canadensis Michx. In: neobiota.lu - Invasive Alien Species in Luxembourg. National Museum of Natural History, Luxembourg. URL: https://neobiota.lu/elodea-canadensis/ [Accessed 2019-10-19].

 Last updated on Wednesday, October 9, 2019.