Two Fungal Diseases Spreading and Endangering Walnut Species: Butternut Canker and Thousand Cankers Disease
Invasive fungal diseases and insects are assaulting hardwood tree species in our eastern forests. Although the insects receive more attention (they are more visible after all), scientists, foresters, and environmentalists are concerned that invasive fungi are endangering many hardwoods, with fungus-caused canker diseases the most destructive. Trees that produce mast—beechnuts, butternuts, walnuts, and acorns, which are food sources for many animals—are especially at risk. The most tragic example is the American chestnut, once the "queen of the eastern forests," which has essentially been extirpated in the wild in its native range because of the canker disease chestnut blight.
View the January 2016 Research Review (3 MB PDF)
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Public Affairs Specialist
USDA Forest Service - Northern Research Station
1992 Folwell Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55108