A new type of soft rot of southern pine longitudinal tracheids is described. In this type, soft rot cavities form by diffuse degradation of the S2 cell wall layer by hyphae growing within the cell wall. Erosion is diffuse and irregular as opposed to the restricted, periodic erosion typical of type 1 soft rot cavity formation. Proboscis hyphae remain small (diameter 0.6 to 0.8 µm) and rapidly autolyze. These proboscis hyphae are not easily recognizable with light microscopy, especially at later decay stages, and require transmission electron microscopy to confirm their presence. This may be an alternative interpretation of the type 2 soft rot of softwoods described previously as being caused by lumenal hyphae through an intact S3.