TCBES Seminar - Rapid 'ohi'a death - Event Details

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TCBES Seminar - Rapid 'ohi'a death

Location: Wentworth 9

Unraveling the mystery of rapid ‘ōhi’a death
Tropical Conservation Biology and Environmental Science M.S. Program - Weekly Seminar
Speaker: Dr. Lisa Keith, USDA Agricultural Research Service

ˋŌhiˋa (Metrosideros polymorpha) is Hawaii’s most widespread and ecologically important native tree, defining native forest succession and ecosystem function over broad areas, providing critical habitat for rare and endangered native bird and insect species, and exemplifying the strong links between native Hawaiian culture and the islands’ environment.

Within the past 5 years, extensive ˋōhiˋa mortality has been observed in the Puna District of Hawai‘i Island. Affected trees exhibit rapid, synchronized death of leaves on individual branches that eventually spreads to the entire canopy. Cross sections of diseased trees revealed dark discoloration in the xylem of the trunk. A fungus was isolated from infected tissue, and based on morphological characteristics and molecular sequencing, the fungus was identified as Ceratocystis fimbriata. Pathogenicity of C. fimbriata from this study was tested by inoculation of pot-grown seedlings of ˋōhiˋa, and the results of this research led to the discovery of a new disease – Rapid ˋŌhiˋa Death (ROD).

Special Restrictions: All are welcome!

For more information, contact: estacy@hawaii.edu (808) 932-7715

Tags: Ohia Death Ohia TCBES Biology Conservation

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