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New Discovery!! The Tallest Tree In Africa Is In Tanzania!!

Forest giants do not live only in America or Asia. The discovery of a specimen of Entandrophragmaexcelsum over 80 meters high in the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania , by a team of German researchers, is entering the African in a record book which she was excluded.

It seemed so far admitted that African trees could not grow beyond 65 meters. Only a eucalyptus 81 meters, introduced in the early twentieth century in South Africa , had been spotted before perishing in a storm in 2006.

Larger specimens prevailed in the United States where redwoods (Sequoia sempervirens) exceed 110 meters or Australia with eucalyptus (eucalyptus regnans) of 99.6 meters.

Strolling for twenty-five years the highest peak on the continent that the biologist Andreas Hemp, of the University of Bayreuth, managed to contradict this belief. “Many areas remain poorly studied in Africa, especially outside the biodiversity hotspots”, explains the researcher in the paper published in October in the journal Biodiversity and Conversation to justify neglect of these giants.

The tallest tree species in the world with their circumference and size. Credits: Andreas Hemp

Relegated to the slopes of isolated valleys between 1,200 meters and 2,100 meters above sea level, they are masters of “relict forests” of a few square kilometers. Difficult to access, they found these too harsh volcanic soil to cultivate the ideal conditions for the growth of large trees. “The southern slopes of Kilimanjaro offer favorable climatic conditions with heavy rainfall, high temperatures and low seasonal variations,” continued Andreas Hemp and coauthors.

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One thousand colossi

The poor quality of commercial Entandrophragma excelsum compared to sapellis and mahogany also protected these giants whose trunk can exceed 2.5 meters in diameter.

The inventories carried out by the researchers made it possible to identify thirteen trees over 50 meters thanks to laser measurements.The highest reaches 81.5 meters and is more than six hundred years old. Extrapolating the results of their study, they believe it could stayaround a thousand giants of this species on an area of 7 km2 distributed in small forest islands.

If the tree trunk brown red present also in Congo – Kinshasa, and Zambia is not classified in the Red List of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Andreas Hemp, however, considers urgent to get the valleys Where it remains in the protected perimeter of the Kilimanjaro National Park. Do not do it, he writes, would take the risk of losing the memory of a time when Kilimanjaro retained its original vegetation. And to lose the tallest trees in Africa.

Source: The Monde.fr

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Written by How Africa

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