North Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station


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Research Profile - Michael Wunsch

The long-term objective of the plant pathology research program at the Carrington Research Extension Center is to deliver disease management solutions that keep North Dakota producers competitive in world markets.

Name: Michael Wunsch
Department: Carrington REC
REC Location
: Carrington

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The Researcher

Michael obtained his Ph.D. in May 2010 from Cornell University in Ithaca, NY.  At Cornell, he studied under the guidance of Gary Bergstrom, the New York state extension field crops pathologist.  Michael received a B.S. in biology and a B.A. in economics from the University of Missouri-Columbia, and he served with the U.S. Peace Corps in Honduras prior to commencing his graduate studies.  Michael is originally from Montana.  Michael joined the Carrington Research Extension Center in June of 2010 as a Plant Pathologist.

The Research

The plant pathology program at the Carrington Research Extension Center addresses disease management problems on a wide breadth of crops grown in North Dakota.  Research and outreach efforts are currently focused primarily on (1) improving the management of Sclerotinia diseases in sunflowers, dry edible beans, soybeans, and other broadleaf crops; (2) addressing disease management problems in lentils, field peas, and chickpeas; (3) generating independent data on the efficacy of registered foliar fungicides and seed treatment fungicides against diseases of economic importance; (4) facilitating the registration of new fungicides; and (5) the development of new crop varieties with improved disease resistance. 

Why it Matters

Almost all diseases causing economic losses on crops in North Dakota also cause losses in other states and regions of the world.  Many of the disease management practices that we help develop are directly applicable to producers in neighboring states (Minnesota, Montana, and South Dakota) and neighboring Canadian provinces (Manitoba and Saskatchewan). They are often also applicable with minor adjustments to producers in other regions.

When finished, what will your work mean? What will it mean to the state of ND?

The goal of the plant pathology program is to conduct research and outreach that will (1) deliver disease management solutions that reduce economic losses to crop diseases in North Dakota, (2) improve the profitability of agriculture in North Dakota, and (3) maintain the competitiveness of North Dakota producers in world markets.





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