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DEADLY OAK WILT DISEASE FOUND IN SEVERAL TOWNS IN SUFFOLK COUNTY

By JORDAN WILIAMS

On December 29, New York State’s Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and Department of Agriculture and Markets (DAM) announced that Oak Wilt, has been detected in the borough of Brooklyn and in several towns in Suffolk County. The disease stems from the Oak Tree and was identified by the Cornell Plant Disease Diagnostic Clinic after samples from symptomatic oak trees were collected by DEC Forest Health Technicians.

The confirmation of the disease in Brooklyn marks the fourth county where oak wilt has been confirmed in New York. There is no known treatment to contain and kill the oak wilt fungus other than to remove the infected trees, as well as any surrounding host oak trees. The DEC plans to remove all trees that have tested positive for the disease to try and minimize it from spreading further.

“It is important that these emergency orders are taken seriously,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. “Moving contaminated wood without taking precautions will spread this serious tree-killing disease to additional areas.”

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