Jack’s Walk

Over the weekend Charly wrote an interesting post about different types of fungal infections in trees. Today, Jack and I came upon this downed tree and if I remember his post correctly this is a sapwood infection with unaffected heartwood. The damage is quite extreme and I think the infection is parasitic rather than fungal. So much of the wood has been eaten away that I suspect some sort of critter made a banquet of this tree.

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  1. says

    That’s how you get “spalted” wood -- fungi start growing in the cracks and bore-holes and discolor the wood, sometimes beautifully.

  2. says

    How beautiful it is! My fave walking stick is full of engravings from different kinds of insects. Amazing, really, looks as though it were carved.

  3. says

    This looks more like either work of termites or carpenter ants. And yes, it is sapwood damage.
    Sapwood is easier to digest because it contains less tans and resins than heartwood, is more porous and softer. In some species the heartwood can resist damage for years, even decades (for example osage orange is extremely resistant).

    It is beautiful picture regardless.

  4. Ice Swimmer says

    Some critters have had a long lunch. A beautiful picture indeed. The heartwood look so solid and the sapwood well and truly tunneled into and nibbled.

  5. voyager says

    Thank you everyone for your kind comments.

    Charly, a big thank you to you especially for giving me the idea. As soon as I saw the tree I thought of your post.

  6. says

    I just love how the inspirational the people here are, there’s never any shortage of ideas. :D That said, it’s a gorgeous photo, I like the composition so much.

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