Volunteers Community Partners

Starry Stonewort Collaborative

Starry Stonewort (Nitellopsis obtusa) (Photo by S. Brown)

The Starry Stonewort Collaborative was a program that brought together and enhanced the capacity of researchers, collaborators and concerned citizens to further understand and control the invasive aquatic species Starry Stonewort (Nitellopsis obtusa or SSW). Left unchecked this invader can harm natural ecosystems, push out native species, and clog up waterways.

To help fight SSW, the Collaborative used a framework of 40+ scientists, stakeholders, and resource managers from across the Great Lakes basin who supplied local support through outreach efforts, resource exchanges, and data collection. Through these partners, the Collaborative ran programs like the Citizen Science Survey, which utilized citizen scientists to gather data on the location of aquatic invasive species, and trained an ever increasing number of people about SSW. For additional support, the Collaborative used a smaller Expert Panel who reviewed papers, recommended control and management practices, and provided educational webinars.

The Collaborative also worked with other organizations, like the United States Geological Survey Nonindigenous Aquatic Species program (USGS-NAS), iMapInvasives and EDDmaps to create more comprehensive and accessible records of the locations of starry stonewort infestations.


Starry Stonewort Range as of 9/21

More information about SSW and the Collaborative can be found on the Collaborative’s website, www.starrystonewort.org, which contains numerous factsheets, videos, and documents, including an annotated bibliography that provides summaries and citations for a number of research papers.

One of the major achievements of the Collaborative was the creation of a definitive guide for the prevention, control, and management of SSW. Those that wish to learn more can view the guide here: SSW Management guide-final 010522.