Flora and Fauna of Mannahatta

The flora and fauna list of native plants and vertebrate animals possibly found on Mannahatta in September 1609 is based on analysis of historical records, species lists and habitat relationships. Notes on methods and sources can be found in Mannahatta: A Natural History of New York City (Abrams 2009).

 

Species are organized by family and by likelihood that the species might have been found either on the island or within one-thousand meters of the shore. Click on the scientific name to learn more about the ecology of the species.

Key to Likelihood: **** = likely; *** = probable; ** = possible; ° = remotely possible

 
Family Name Common Name Scientific Name Likelihood
 
Acanthaceae American water-willow **
Aceraceae boxelder ****
red maple ****
silver maple ****
sugar maple ****
black maple **
striped maple **
Acoraceae sweetflag ****
Alismataceae northern water plantain ****
grassy arrowhead ****
broadleaf arrowhead ****
hooded arrowhead **
awl-leaf arrowhead **
Amaranthaceae tidalmarsh amaranth **
seaside amaranth **
Anacardiaceae fragrant sumac ****
flameleaf sumac ****
eastern poison ivy ****
poison sumac ****
Apiaceae spotted water hemlock ****
eastern grasswort ****
purple meadowparsnip ****
purplestem angelica **
hairy angelica **
bulblet-bearing water hemlock **
Canadian honewort **
rattlesnakemaster **
common cowparsnip **
American marshpennywort **
manyflower marshpennywort **
longstyle sweetroot **
stiff cowbane **
herbwilliam **
Canadian blacksnakeroot **
Maryland sanicle **
hemlock waterparsnip **
yellow pimpernel **
meadow zizia **
golden zizia **
Apocynaceae spreading dogbane ****
Indianhemp ****
Aquifoliaceae smooth winterberry ****
mountain holly ****
common winterberry ****
inkberry **
Araceae green dragon ****
Jack in the pulpit ****
goldenclub ****
Skunk Cabbage ****
green arrow arum **
Araliaceae wild sarsaparilla ****
American spikenard ****
American ginseng ****
bristly sarsaparilla **
dwarf ginseng **
Aristolochiaceae Canadian wildginger **
Asclepiadaceae swamp milkweed ****
purple milkweed ****
common milkweed ****
butterfly milkweed ****
redring milkweed ****
clasping milkweed **
poke milkweed **
fourleaf milkweed **
red milkweed **
whorled milkweed **
green comet milkweed **
Aspleniaceae ebony spleenwort ****
walking fern ****
maidenhair spleenwort ****
wallrue **
Asteraceae annual ragweed ****
great ragweed ****
western pearly everlasting ****
field pussytoes ****
woman’s tobacco ****
eastern baccharis ****
Spanish needles ****
nodding beggartick ****
purplestem beggarticks ****
crowned beggarticks ****
devil’s beggartick ****
Maryland goldenaster ****
yellow thistle ****
swamp thistle ****
pasture thistle ****
Canadian horseweed ****
American burnweed ****
eastern daisy fleabane ****
Philadelphia fleabane ****
prairie fleabane ****
hyssopleaf thoroughwort ****
spotted joepyeweed ****
common boneset ****
sweetscented joepyeweed ****
roundleaf thoroughwort ****
white wood aster ****
bigleaf aster ****
flat-top goldentop ****
slender goldentop ****
thinleaf sunflower ****
giant sunflower ****
queendevil ****
Allegheny hawkweed ****
rough hawkweed ****
rattlesnakeweed ****
flaxleaf whitetop aster ****
Jesuit’s bark ****
tall blue lettuce ****
Canada lettuce ****
devil’s bite ****
climbing hempvine ****
whorled wood aster ****
stiff goldenrod ****
golden ragwort ****
sweetscent ****
tall rattlesnakeroot ****
rabbittobacco ****
narrowleaf whitetop aster ****
white goldenrod ****
Canada goldenrod ****
zigzag goldenrod ****
gray goldenrod ****
anisescented goldenrod ****
roundleaf goldenrod ****
seaside goldenrod ****
showy goldenrod ****
common blue wood aster ****
white heath aster ****
white panicle aster ****
Lowrie’s blue wood aster ****
New England aster ****
New York aster ****
purplestem aster ****
smooth white oldfield aster ****
shore aster ****
New York ironweed ****
trumpetweed ***
Kalm’s hawkweed ***
white snakeroot **
small beggarticks **
smooth beggartick **
threelobe beggarticks **
tall thistle **
field thistle **
blue mistflower **
cornel-leaf whitetop **
parasol whitetop **
robin’s plantain **
white thoroughwort **
justiceweed **
Pine Barren thoroughwort **
low rough aster **
western showy aster **
spoonleaf purple everlasting **
common sneezeweed **
swamp sunflower **
woodland sunflower **
paleleaf woodland sunflower **
smooth oxeye **
Canadian hawkweed **
twoflower dwarfdandelion **
Virginia dwarfdandelion **
woodland lettuce **
hairy lettuce **
dense blazing star **
bog aster **
roundleaf ragwort **
balsam groundsel **
sickleleaf silkgrass **
white rattlesnakeroot **
purple rattlesnakeroot **
cankerweed **
gall of the earth **
cutleaf coneflower **
toothed whitetop aster **
Atlantic goldenrod **
wreath goldenrod **
giant goldenrod **
hairy goldenrod **
early goldenrod **
Elliott’s goldenrod **
downy goldenrod **
wrinkleleaf goldenrod **
stout goldenrod **
bog goldenrod **
elmleaf goldenrod **
rice button aster **
smooth blue aster **
calico aster **
late purple aster **
Pringle’s aster **
willowleaf aster **
eastern annual saltmarsh aster **
perennial saltmarsh aster **
waxyleaf aster **
wingstem **
Azollaceae Carolina mosquitofern **
Balsaminaceae jewelweed ****
pale touch-me-not ****
Berberidaceae blue cohosh ****
mayapple ****
Betulaceae speckled alder ****
hazel alder ****
sweet birch ****
river birch ****
paper birch ****
gray birch ****
yellow birch ****
American hornbeam ****
American hazelnut ****
hophornbeam ****
beaked hazelnut **
Blechnaceae netted chainfern ****
Virginia chainfern ****
Boraginaceae spring forget-me-not ****
wild Job’s tears ****
wild comfrey **
beggarslice **
Virginia bluebells **
bay forget-me-not **
Brassicaceae sicklepod ****
tower rockcress ****
smooth rockcress ****
bulbous bittercress ****
cutleaf toothwort ****
crinkleroot ****
sand bittercress ****
Carolina draba ****
hairy rockcress **
lyrate rockcress **
American searocket **
Pennsylvania bittercress **
cuckoo flower **
bog yellowcress **
Cabombaceae watershield **
Cactaceae devil’s-tongue ****
Callitrichaceae northern water-starwort ****
twoheaded water-starwort **
vernal water-starwort **
terrestrial water-starwort **
Campanulaceae cardinalflower ****
Indian-tobacco ****
Ontario lobelia ****
Nuttall’s lobelia ****
great blue lobelia ****
palespike lobelia ****
clasping Venus’ looking-glass ****
marsh bellflower **
American bellflower **
Capparaceae redwhisker clammyweed **
Caprifoliaceae northern bush honeysuckle ****
limber honeysuckle ****
trumpet honeysuckle ****
common elderberry ****
feverwort ****
mapleleaf viburnum ****
southern arrowwood ****
hobblebush ****
blackhaw ****
orangefruit horse-gentian ***
twinflower **
red elderberry **
nannyberry **
possumhaw **
Caryophyllaceae seaside sandplant ****
sleepy silene ****
Pennsylvania catchfly ****
widowsfrill ****
nodding chickweed **
pinebarren stitchwort **
bluntleaf sandwort **
smooth forked nailwort **
trailing pearlwort **
bog chickweed **
longleaf starwort **
Celastraceae American bittersweet ****
strawberry bush ****
eastern wahoo **
running strawberry bush **
Ceratophyllaceae coon’s tail **
spineless hornwort **
Chenopodiaceae crested saltbush ****
mapleleaf goosefoot ****
chickenclaws ****
red goosefoot **
Standley’s goosefoot **
dwarf saltwort **
annual seepweed **
Cistaceae hairy pinweed ****
Illinois pinweed ****
hoary frostweed **
longbranch frostweed **
pinebarren goldenheather **
woolly beachheather **
largepod pinweed **
beach pinweed **
thymeleaf pinweed **
Leggett’s pinweed **
narrowleaf pinweed **
Clethraceae coastal sweetpepperbush ****
Clusiaceae lesser Canadian St. Johnswort ****
spotted St. Johnswort ****
Virginia marsh St. Johnswort ****
pale St. Johnswort **
orangegrass **
large St. Johnswort **
dwarf St. Johnswort **
Commelinaceae whitemouth dayflower ****
Convolvulaceae low false bindweed ****
man of the earth ****
Cornaceae alternateleaf dogwood ****
silky dogwood ****
stiff dogwood ****
flowering dogwood ****
gray dogwood ****
roundleaf dogwood ****
redosier dogwood ****
bunchberry dogwood **
Crassulaceae ditch stonecrop ****
Cucurbitaceae wild cucumber ****
oneseed burr cucumber ****
Cupressaceae Atlantic white cedar ****
eastern redcedar ****
common juniper **
Cuscutaceae scaldweed ****
fiveangled dodder ***
buttonbush dodder **
compact dodder **
hazel dodder **
Cyperaceae densetuft hairsedge ****
thicket sedge ****
Emmons’ sedge ****
oval-leaf sedge ****
bristleleaf sedge ****
Hitchcock’s sedge ****
hop sedge ****
Muhlenberg’s sedge ****
Pennsylvania sedge ****
broadleaf sedge ****
Schweinitz’s sedge ****
squarrose sedge ****
parasol sedge ****
fox sedge ****
globe flatsedge ****
Great Plains flatsedge ****
fragrant flatsedge ****
bearded flatsedge ****
strawcolored flatsedge ****
threeway sedge ****
elliptic spikerush ****
bald spikerush ****
dwarf spikerush ****
beaked spikerush ****
hairy umbrella-sedge ****
white beaksedge ****
brownish beaksedge ****
chairmaker’s bulrush ****
river bulrush ****
softstem bulrush ****
woodland bulrush ****
whip nutrush ****
bashful bulrush ****
thinleaf sedge ***
New England bulrush ***
panicled bulrush ***
broadwing sedge **
greenwhite sedge **
white bear sedge **
eastern narrowleaf sedge **
yellowfruit sedge **
water sedge **
hay sedge **
prickly bog sedge **
Barratt’s sedge **
eastern woodland sedge **
bromelike sedge **
button sedge **
Bush’s sedge **
Buxbaum’s sedge **
silvery sedge **
fibrousroot sedge **
longhair sedge **
hirsute sedge **
openfield sedge **
fringed sedge **
white edge sedge **
slender woodland sedge **
softleaf sedge **
star sedge **
thinfruit sedge **
dryspike sedge **
northern long sedge **
graceful sedge **
limestone meadow sedge **
Gray’s sedge **
nodding sedge **
fuzzy wuzzy sedge **
pubescent sedge **
bottlebrush sedge **
greater bladder sedge **
spreading sedge **
broad looseflower sedge **
bristlystalked sedge **
false hop sedge **
shallow sedge **
black edge sedge **
greater straw sedge **
pale sedge **
woolly sedge **
variable sedge **
drooping sedge **
cypresslike sedge **
reflexed sedge **
knotsheath sedge **
rosy sedge **
eastern rough sedge **
broom sedge **
beach sedge **
burr reed sedge **
dioecious sedge **
owlfruit sedge **
eastern straw sedge **
upright sedge **
bent sedge **
Swan’s sedge **
rigid sedge **
blunt broom sedge **
hairyfruit sedge **
threeseeded sedge **
velvet sedge **
ribbed sedge **
Willdenow’s sedge **
smooth sawgrass **
slender flatsedge **
toothed flatsedge **
umbrella flatsedge **
redroot flatsedge **
yellow flatsedge **
Gray’s flatsedge **
needle spikerush **
Engelmann’s spikerush **
blackfruit spikerush **
blunt spikerush **
bright green spikerush **
ovate spikerush **
common spikerush **
squarestem spikerush **
cone-cup spikerush **
slender cottongrass **
tawny cottongrass **
slender fimbry **
marsh fimbry **
brown beaksedge **
common threesquare **
weakstalk bulrush **
sturdy bulrush **
Torrey’s bulrush **
woolgrass **
rufous bulrush **
leafy bulrush **
netted nutrush **
low nutrush **
Dennstaedtiaceae eastern hayscented fern ****
western brackenfern ****
Dioscoreaceae wild yam ****
Droseraceae threadleaf sundew **
spoonleaf sundew **
roundleaf sundew **
Dryopteridaceae common ladyfern ****
bulblet bladderfern ****
brittle bladderfern ****
silver false spleenwort ****
spinulose woodfern ****
crested woodfern ****
intermediate woodfern ****
marginal woodfern ****
ostrich fern ****
sensitive fern ****
Christmas fern ****
rusty woodsia ****
bluntlobe cliff fern ****
mountain woodfern **
Clinton’s woodfern **
Goldie’s woodfern **
western oakfern **
Ebenaceae common persimmon ****
Elatinaceae American waterwort **
Equisetaceae field horsetail ****
scouringrush horsetail ****
water horsetail **
woodland horsetail **
Ericaceae creeping snowberry ****
eastern teaberry ****
black huckleberry ****
blue huckleberry ****
mountain laurel ****
swamp doghobble ****
maleberry ****
piedmont staggerbush ****