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Rock Snot invasion in the Northeast US | Start Global Cooling News
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Rock Snot invasion in the Northeast US


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Didymo or Rock Snot (Didymosphenia geminata) in Vermont and the Northeast

didymo growth in Batten Kill microscopic view of didymo

Didymo growth in the Batten Kill

(NY section)

Didymo cell

(400X magnification)

Background

Didymosphenia geminata, also known as ‘Didymo’ and ‘Rock Snot’ is a type of freshwater diatom or algae. Individual cells can’t be seen without a microscope but they can produce a fibrous stalk that can develop into visible mats. Though originally native to northern latitudes of Europe, Asia, and North America, it has undergone a recent large expansion in range and is now found in many western U.S. and Canadian rivers, some tailwater rivers in the south and, more recently, in Quebec and New Brunswick, as well as other locations around the world. In addition to expanding its range, it’s also showing, in some locations, the potential to form nuisance blooms, during which it can form mats several inches thick that carpet a stream bottom. Until 2006 it was unheard of in the northeastern U.S. It was discovered during the summers of 2006 and 2007 in the Batten Kill (NY/VT), in 2007 in the Connecticut River (NH/VT), the White River (VT), and the Delaware River system (NY/PA), and in 2008 in the Gunpowder River (MD) and the Mad River (VT).

Click here to see the distribution of Didymosphenia geminata in Vermont (pdf, 212 KB)

Click here to see the North American distribution of Didymosphenia geminata (pdf, 115 KB)

Click on the following shortcuts or scroll down for more information about Didymo:

Things you should know about Didymo in Vermont

What does Didymo look and feel like?

How is Didymo a threat?

What impacts will Didymo have on our natural resources?

What is the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources doing about Didymo?

What precautions should river users take to avoid spreading Didymo?

How can I properly disinfect my recreational equipment?

What should I do if I think I’ve found Didymo?

Where can I find more information?

Story by Vermont Water Quality Division

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