Oak wilt found at Rib Mountain State Park - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Oak wilt found at Rib Mountain State Park

RIB MOUNTAIN (WAOW) - State wildlife officials say a tree-killing fungus has been found at Rib Mountain State Park.

Forest Health Specialist Mike Hillstrom says he found four trees infected with oak wilt. The fungus clogs up oaks' water tissue, causing them to die.

Hillstrom says they've found oak wilt in Marathon County before, but this is the first time they've found it in the park.

"The major concern here is that once the fungus is in the tree, it spreads through roots to connected trees below ground," said Hillstrom. "If you have oak that's infected, it can spread to another oak tree where the roots are connected, so you get this expanding pocket that get infected."

Hillstrom says the infected trees will be removed within the next few weeks.

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