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Claudette Fleming
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London, G.B, United Kingdom
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Rainforest Wood Foraging

Posted by Claudette Fleming over 9 years ago

Wood foraging is an old practice used by indigenous people. Now it is being used to address new problems.

Rainforest wood foraging is new to Moraro. Yet, indigenous people have been practising it on a small scale for ages. If a usable fallen tree or old log is found in the forest, it is taken to be used—be it Wallaba (Eperua) for shingles or Mora (Mora excelsa) for an adisa (a wooden sink)

In Moraro, we are going one step further.  We want a sustainable forest for the present and future. It is therefore important that we use all trees that can be converted to usable timber.

Timber is reaped from felled trees that are seen to be useless. Most of the trees are cut down by farmers,  to make way for new farms  and would have been left to rot. Some may have fallen naturally. Trees could be unappealing for use because of their specie, structure, hardness or their small size.  In addition, it might have been difficult to get a chainsaw, to convert the wood into proper building material.

After looking at current trends, we see  how important it is to harvest timber from such trees.  Apart from the fact that it is a waste to allow good wood to rot, there are other important reasons.

Sustaining forests is very important if small indigenous rainforest communities are to survive. 

Deforestation, population growth, demand for timber products  are all good reasons for forest care.  Then, there is the threat of dispossessing indigenous people of traditional lands.  Wood foraging is sustainable. We believe if practised widely, the practice can help in maintaining our forests for the future.

Foraged wood is helping us. It is excellent. We get building materials, as well as materials to use in our education programme. It is supplying our need for finished timber, while the forest is being replenished.

Rainforest wood foraging is a good example of how an old practice can be built upon, to solve current problems while addressing future needs.



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