A Lewiston Sun Journal article about the prevalence of fungi and insects that are damaging Maine’s beech trees included research from Bill Livingston of UMaine’s School of Forest Resources. Livingston found warmer winter temperatures from 1999 to 2002 allowed populations of an invasive, bark-feeding scale insect to explode, resulting in beech trunks turning white with millions of scale insects. Insect feeding and severe drought at the time weakened the trees’ resistance to fungal infections, and many trees died. More information is available in a UMaine news release.
Contact: Jessica Bloch, 207-581-3777