I understand you are in the process of completing a wood identification guide. Who is the guide for, and how will he/she use it?
Answer: The guide is tailored to provide a quick field screening tool for forest officers inspecting the identity and legality of traded timber species in Mozambique.
How are tools like a wood identification field manual used to counter illegal logging?
What are some of the other tools, people or mechanisms that must be paired with the guide for effectiveness against illegal logging?
Answer: By using the guide, the law enforcement officers have a robust tool to detect endangered/banned/prohibited wood species and halt illegal logging activities. Training of custom officers will also be needed to help against false declaration of timber consignments and enforce correct tax duties.
What was most challenging about creating the guide?
Answer: The most challenging aspect was to create a manual for wood identification using anatomy features for forest officers that lack knowledge/education in forestry or related field/background.
What do you think is the most interesting aspect of the guide?
Answer: The guide is very illustrated to attract attention of its users. Basically, the approach is to check the anatomical pattern of the suspected sample against the reference images in the guide.
Is there anything else you would like to share about the guide?
Answer: We think the forest officers will need regular training and refresh courses on how to use the manual.
Below, Dr. Uetimane inputs anatomical patterns for wood identification.