An experiment was designed to assess the capacity of Salvinia minima Baker to uptake and accumulate nickel in its tissues and to evaluate whether or not this uptake can affect its physiology. Our results suggest that S. minima plants are able to take up high amounts of nickel in its tissues, particularly in roots. In fact, our results support the idea that S. minima might be considered a hyper-accumulator of nickel, as it is able to accumulate 16.3 mg g(-1) (whole plant DW basis). Our results also showed a two-steps uptake pattern of nickel, with a fast uptake of nickel at the first 6 to 12h of being expose to the metal, followed by a slow take up phase until the end of the experiment at 144 h. S. minima thus, may be considered as a fern useful in the phytoremediation of residual water bodies contaminated with this metal. Also from our results, S. minima can tolerate fair concentrations of the metal; however, at concentrations higher than 80 μM Ni (1.5 mg g(-1) internal nickel concentration), its physiological performance can be affected. For instance, the integrity of cell membranes was affected as the metal concentration and exposure time increased. The accumulation of high concentrations of internal nickel did also affect photosynthesis, the efficiency of PSII, and the concentration of photosynthetic pigments, although at a lower extent.