Parrot’s Feather

Species: Myriophyllum aquaticum

weed identification

common name
Parrot’s Feather, Thread of Life

The parrot’s feather is a submerged plant with whorled leaves that are toothed and green in colour. It forms long stems that can grow above the water’s surface. In warm, coastal conditions the plant flowers through most of the year. Only female flowers have been recorded in Australia, hence fertile seeds are not produced.


Commonly found around the edges of water bodies. The plant prefers slow-moving fresh water in more tropical and temperate climates.

native or exotic?

The parrot’s feather reproduces by vegetative means, its stem fragments readily develop roots


It spreads by small fragments that can travel long distances by currents, boats and animals. It does not form seeds in Australia.


It has been known to provide habitat to crayfish and small amounts of food to some species.

What does Parrot’s Feather look like?

Use these images below to help you decide whether you are dealing with Parrot’s Feather.

Disadvantages of Parrot’s Feather

Parrot’s feather is a highly competitive weed capable of rapid growth as such it can have a negative impact on water bodies:

  •  Potential to obstruct water flow, block pumps

  • Potential to cause flooding

  • Forms dense mats that blocks light and competes with native vegetation

  • Reduces food and habitat for fish and other aquatic

  • Impedes water-based recreation


AQ200 Aquatic Herbicide – Chemical Herbicide designed to kill submerged weeds quickly. Use on mild to severe infestations.

Aquatic Weed Rake and Razor combo – DIY physical removal. Ideal for mild infestations, sensitive water bodies or to aid herbicide treatment. Ensure any removed plant is disposed of carefully, or infestation will likely return quickly.

Aquatic Harvesting (Mobitrac) – Large amphibious machine that clears submerged aquatic weeds. Book this service for severe infestations or for larger water bodies.

prevention options

Aquatic Blue – Blue dye that may reduce temperature of the water body by reducing UV light penetration. This may then increase oxygen saturation.

Aerating Fountains – Reduces the severity and likelihood of aquatic weed infestations. Use in any body of water.