Acorn Mast Survey Results Show Increases for White, Red Oaks
The 2012 acorn mast survey conducted at 38 Ohio wildlife areas showed an increase in production from the previous year, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources’ (ODNR) Division of Wildlife. The acorn mast nearly matched the banner year of 2010. The overall number white oak trees producing acorns increased 36 percent from 2011, and the number of red oak trees producing acorns increased by 9 percent.
ODNR Division of Wildlife employees scanned the canopies of selected oak trees on 38 state wildlife areas to determine the percentage of trees that produced acorns and the relative size of the acorn crop. Thirty-two wildlife areas reported an increase in white oak acorn production, and 27 wildlife areas showed an increase in red oak acorn production. An average of 52 percent of white oak trees and 67 percent of red oak trees bore fruit in 2012. In 2011, 16 percent of white oak trees and 58 percent of red oak trees bore fruit.
“The fall of 2010 represented the highest percentage of fruit-bearing white and red oaks recorded over the past eight years,” said Suzie Prange, forest wildlife biologist with ODNR’s Division of Wildlife. “During the fall of 2012, a rebound occurred with the percentage of oaks producing fruit almost equaling the bumper crop of 2010.”