Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Mosquito Bulrush - Scirpus hattorianus   Makino
Members of Cyperaceae:
Members of Scirpus with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 5 » Order Cyperales » Family Cyperaceae
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AuthorMakino
DistributionMountains only, mostly middle to high elevations. The website editors have accepted only specimens annotated by E. Schuyler or G. Tucker. There is confusion about the range of the species with S. atrovirens, which might not occur in NC. Though almost certainly limited to the mountains, exact details of the range are not clear, but it should occur in other high elevation counties between Yancey County and Swain - Transylvania counties.

Newf. to Ont. and WI, south to NC and IN.
AbundanceUncommon. Probably somewhat overlooked and confused with other species. The website editors tentatively give a State Rank of S2S3, as the editors have confirmed specimens from just 7 counties so far. The NCNHP's rank of S3 might well be correct.
HabitatWet meadows, marshes, seepage slopes, wet ditches -- at middle and high elevations.
See also Habitat Account for Montane Wet Meadows
PhenologyFlowering and fruiting June-September.
IdentificationThe stems generally are about 3 feet tall, and leaves are few. The inflorescence is usually 2-parted: the upper group of spikelet clusters is separated from the lower by generally erect stalks. S. georgianus is very similar but has 0-3 seed bristles (vs. 5-6 in S. hattorianus) and its bristles are much shorter than the seed body (vs. about as long as the seed body).
Taxonomic CommentsIn older texts, it has been lumped within S. atrovirens, which has not been conclusively proven to occur in NC.

Note that the genus Schoenoplectus has been split from Scirpus and includes plants with sessile spikelets, or with spikelets with a few branches (vs. open, widely branching inflorescences). Most of our Schoenoplectus species appear to have no leaves (exceptions are S. etuberculatus and S. subterminalis), whereas Scirpus taxa have well-developed basal and stem leaves.
Other Common Name(s)Northern Bulrush
State RankS3 [S2S3]
Global RankG5
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