Tilletia caries

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Tilletia caries
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Fungi
Phylum: Basidiomycota
Class: Exobasidiomycetes
Subclass: Exobasidiomycetidae
Order: Tilletiales
Family: Tilletiaceae
Genus: Tilletia
Species: T. caries
Binomial name
Tilletia caries
(DC.) Tul. & C. Tul., (1847)

Fusisporium inosculans Berk., (1847)
Lycoperdon tritici Bjerk., (1775)
Tilletia tritici (Bjerk.) G. Winter, (1874)
Uredo caries DC., (1815)

Tilletia caries is a plant pathogen that infects wheat causing the disease bunt. Plants infected with the disease are often slightly stunted, occasionally with yellow streaks on the flag leaf. Grain is replaced with bunt balls containing masses of black spores. At ripening, the ears take longer to lose their green colour, are short and plump and the glumes are pushed further apart. The spores of bunt have a strong fish-like smell. Infection occurs at harvest or during grain handling when the spores are spread to healthy seed.

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  • E.C.Large (1940) The Advance of the Fungi, Jonathan Cape: Chapter V "The Bunt of the Wheat".