Water Ferns were moderately common. They grew along water races, in seepage from water races, and down mine shafts. Almost all of the local records are from over a quarter of a century ago.
Water ferns differ from most other ferns in that the fronds are once-divided, and the fertile fronds differ from the barren fronds. The fertile fronds have narrower leaflets that have a shrivelled appearance.
The fronds. The size of the leaflets on the middle and lower parts of the fronds, and how the leaflets are attached to the stalk help separate the species.