It is a universally acknowledged truth. The continent's forests continue to deteriorate year after year. There are many reasons for this rampant deforestation. Trafficking in precious wood (kevazingo, barwood, or rosewood) is one of them. Between 50% and 90% is said to be exported illegally.
This is part 4 of a 6-part series
The name could evoke a dinosaur straight out of the Jurassic Park films, but Pterocarpus Erinaceus couldn’t be further from a reconstructed pterodactyl, flying around the big screen and scaring children. In the south of Senegal, this species of precious wood – called, both, rosewood or vène wood – has long been one of the secret treasures of the green forests of Casamance; an ecological treasure, of course, before its uncontrolled exploitation and clandestine trade turned into a lucrative business involving Senegal, the Gambia and China, against the backdrop of an armed rebellion that quickly realised how much money they could make.