MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- Officials say a new type of tree disease has been confirmed in southwest Alabama.
The Alabama Forestry Commission says laurel wilt disease has shown up in samples collected in Marengo and Mobile counties. Officials say the disease is spread by redbay ambrosia beetles, which transmit a type of fungus into the walls of sapwood.
The disease can kill a tree in a few weeks. The commission says the disease mainly affects members of the laurel family including redbay, swampbay, camphor and sassafras trees.
Officials say the disease is spread by the long-distance movement of untreated wood products. It's previously shown up in areas along the south Atlantic seaboard and the Mississippi coast near Mobile.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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