The Saloum Delta is located on Senegal's Atlantic coast south of Dakar. It is a fertile region where the mangrove (coastal forest) plays an important role for the local fauna and flora. These mangroves protect the coastal areas from the ocean's effects and provide favorable conditions for rice cultivation. Local marine animals including fish and birds find comfortable homes in the mangroves where they can develop and reproduce.
Deforestation is a serious risk for this region because of the desire to increase the agricultural areas Paradoxically, removing trees results in soil erosion and sand coming up from the shore. Agricultural areas decrease in size and become less fertile following the soil erosion and the rising sea level. Today, the government and local NGOs have multiple projects in place to repair the soil. Mangroves are replanted along with trees in surrounding fields to stop erosion and make the land fertile again. We will bring you more information about this project in our future articles because this is a textbook case of what can be done in to fight deforestation, by restoring complex ecosystems and improving the lives of local populations.