Previous PageTable Of Contents


New FAO guide to tree health

An illustrated guide to the state of health of trees – recognition and interpretation of symptoms and damage. E. Boa. 2003. Rome, FAO.
ISBN 92-5-105020-1.

The importance of pests and their negative impacts on forests have been for the most part understated. Although insects and diseases are integral components of forests, they can have adverse effects on tree growth and survival, yield and quality of wood and non-wood products, wildlife habitat, recreation and scenic and cultural value. Pest outbreaks can contribute either directly or indirectly to economic and environmental losses. They may compromise national economies and can threaten local economic stability, livelihoods and food security, especially in some developing countries and countries with economies in transition.

The effective management of all tree health problems depends on their early detection. This publication will help readers recognize symptoms of ill health in trees and understand their general significance. The guide provides 140 photographs of symptoms from more than 50 tree species to be used as a basis for demonstrating the effects of pest (biotic) and non-living (abiotic) influences on trees. It is not an identification guide to insect pests and diseases of trees, but aims to help forest managers make visual assessments of tree health problems and provide a preliminary diagnosis which will in turn assist in better planning and more effective management of forests and trees.

The text provides an introduction to tree health, an explanation of why trees become unhealthy, descriptions of unhealthy trees and basic information on symptom analysis.

The guide will be useful to anyone interested in tree health or responsible for managing trees.

Defining rattan

Rattan glossary and compendium glossary with emphasis on Africa. 2004.
Non-Wood Forest Products No. 16. Rome, FAO. ISBN 92-5-105095-3.

There are more than 600 species of rattan, of which only about 10 percent are traded internationally. A wide variety of terms and terminologies are used in the rattan sector worldwide, often with different meanings, and many are not well understood by rattan users. An expert consultation on rattan, organized in December 2000 in Rome by FAO and the International Network for Bamboo and Rattan (INBAR), proposed a number of immediate steps to promote the sustainable use of rattan. One of the conclusions of the meeting was that there was a need to compile and clarify terms and definitions used in the management, utilization, processing and trade of rattans and their products among the many stakeholders in the various countries. To fill this information gap, FAO has compiled this glossary on terms, concepts and definitions related to rattan and its products.

The glossary is structured with the following major sections:

A separate compilation of terms used in Africa gives special emphasis to the emerging rattan sector in that continent.

This publication is also available online:

FAO’s reports on the future of the forest sector in Africa now available on CD-ROM

Forestry Outlook Study for Africa – regional, subregional and country reports. CD-ROM. 2004. Rome, FAO.
ISBN 92-5-005096-8. System requirements: Windows 95/98/NT/2000/XP; 64 MB RAM; 18 MB hard disk space.

The Forestry Outlook Study for Africa (FOSA) is one of a series of regional forestry outlook studies undertaken by FAO. Launched in 1998 and completed in 2003, FOSA portrays alternative futures and offers options for the development of African forestry to the year 2020. FOSA was an initiative of the FAO African Forestry and Wildlife Commission and the FAO Near East Forestry Commission. Partners included the African Development Bank, the European Commission and African countries.

This trilingual CD-ROM contains the complete set of FOSA reports. The Regional report – opportunities and challenges towards 2020 (FAO Forestry Paper No. 141) and the synthesis African forests: a view to 2020 are provided in English, French and Arabic. Separate subregional reports for Central Africa, East Africa, West Africa and southern Africa are provided in English and French, while the subregional report for North Africa is provided in all three languages.

The CD-ROM also contains 45 country outlook papers prepared by national focal points, available only in their original language (English or French).

More information on FOSA can be found on the FAO Forestry Web site:

CPF Sourcebook on funding for sustainable forest management now on CD

Sourcebook on funding for sustainable forest management. Collaborative Partnership on Forests. 2004. Rome, FAO.
System requirements: Windows 95/98/NT/XP; 32 MB RAM; Microsoft Internet Explorer 4+.

Locating funding for sustainable forest management projects is not always easy. Sifting through hundreds of potential funding sources and ensuring that a project matches donor requirements is time consuming and often frustrating. The Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF) Sourcebook on funding for sustainable forest management has been developed to help users efficiently locate global funding sources for sustainable forest management projects.

The sourcebook compiles information on funding sources, policies and delivery mechanisms, with particular focus on projects in developing countries. It also describes how to develop a project proposal. Sources of information include donor agencies and countries, CPF members, international forest-related organizations and instruments, development banks, private sources, regional processes, foundations and international non-governmental organizations.

A major component of the sourcebook is the database of funding sources which contains information on over 350 funds and is a valuable starting point in the search for funding opportunities.

The sourcebook was developed and is maintained by FAO in collaboration with other CPF members and through participation with the Collaborative Partnership on Forests Network and the National Forest Programme Facility.

To obtain a copy of the CD-ROM please e-mail

The sourcebook is also available in English, French and Spanish online:

Reference text on plantation forestry

Plantation forestry in the tropics – the role, silviculture, and use of planted forests for industrial, social, environmental, and agroforestry purposes. J. Evans & J. Turnbull. 2004. New York, NY, USA, Oxford University Press.
ISBN 0-19-852994-5 (hardcover). ISBN 0-19-850947-2 (paperback). 3rd edition.

Development of planted forests in tropical and subtropical countries is accelerating to satisfy the ever-growing global demand for wood products. It is expected that within 20 years half of all wood fibre in the world will be sourced from plantations, of which more than half are in the tropics and subtropics. These are planted not only in intensively managed industrial wood plantations, but also increasingly as part of farming systems, to control erosion and rehabilitate degraded lands and forests. Active community involvement in tree planting as part of rural development is now widespread. Plantation forestry in the tropics, now in its third edition, provides an overview that sets plantation silviculture in the wider context of development processes and their social, environmental and ecological impacts.

The publication is divided into four parts: introduction to the tropics and planted forests; land, social and economic factors, and planning in plantation development; plantation silviculture; and tree planting and plantation forestry in rural development, soil conservation, rehabilitation, environmental considerations and sustainability.

The structure and approach of previous editions have been retained, but every chapter has been comprehensively revised and updated. Two new chapters on clonal forestry and on ecological restoration have also been added. Overall, the book provides an up-to-date account of silvicultural practices, with some socio-economic considerations in recognition of the key role of tree planting in natural resource management and improving rural livelihoods in the tropics. Contemporary issues such as full stakeholder participation and sustainable management practices in planted forests are also addressed.

The authors have drawn on their field experience in over 40 tropical and subtropical countries. Readers will find examples from Africa, Latin America, tropical Asia and the Pacific. Both the historical context and recent developments are presented, and examples are drawn from industrial plantations, rural development plantings, agroforestry and tree planting for soil protection and rehabilitation of degraded forests.

Students, professional foresters, development specialists, and all those with an interest in tropical forest management will find this a valuable reference text.

From afforestation to yield tables

Encyclopedia of forest sciences. J. Burley, J. Evans & J.A. Youngquist, eds. 2004. Oxford, UK, Elsevier Academic Press.
ISBN 0-12-145160-7.

The Encyclopedia of forest sciences provides complete up-to-date coverage of over 60 subjects related to forests and forestry: from afforestation and aquatic habitats in forest ecosystems to forest management and forest pathology; from genetics and harvesting to urban forestry and yield tables. This four-volume set covers relevant aspects of biology and ecology, the different types of forestry (e.g. tropical and dryland forestry), taxonomy of trees and shrubs, and the applied, economic and social aspects of forest management. It not only summarizes recent advances in forest science techniques, but also thoroughly covers the basic information vital to comprehensive understanding of the important elements of forestry.

Edited and written by a distinguished group of editors and contributors, the encyclopaedia provides concise, readable entries, easy searches and thorough cross-references. Colour tables, figures and photographs complement each entry, and a comprehensive glossary defines new and important terms.

Combining broad disciplinary coverage and scientific excellence, the Encyclopedia of forest sciences will be an indispensable reference tool for libraries; governmental and
non-governmental organizations; universities and individuals involved in research on forests, forest products and services and related topics; local, national and international decision-making bodies; and forest landowners and other forest-dependent individuals.

An online version of the encyclopaedia will be available on Science Direct in 2004 (

Biodiversity in Lake Chad ecosystems

The future is an ancient lake – traditional knowledge, biodiversity and genetic resources for food and agriculture in Lake Chad Basin ecosystems. C. Batello, M. Marzot and A.H. Touré. 2004. Rome, FAO.
ISBN 92-5-105064-3.

The people of the Lake Chad Basin in Africa, over centuries, have developed a wealth of local technologies enabling them to survive harsh and uncertain conditions. Biodiversity, to the people living in this region, is not the mere subject of an academic debate with political overtones, it is the substance of survival. History has recorded a period of complete disappearance of Lake Chad. Yet the ecosystem has regenerated itself and the civilization there continues to flourish.

This large-format illustrated book, containing over 350 colour photographs by Mario Marzot, provides an insight into the life and customs of the local farmers, fisherfolk and pastoralists who foster, maintain and use biodiversity in their traditional agricultural systems, deploying the knowledge and techniques that they have accumulated over many centuries.

The book focuses on such subjects as grasslands, livestock, agricultural systems, water and land, and fisheries. A chapter on wildlife examines conservation and wise use, wildlife as part of a multiple land use system, tourism and protected areas. A section on “the faint borders of agriculture” addresses the use of wild plants for food and other products. Forest resources highlighted in this section include, among others, Acacia seyal, Balanites aegyptica, Faidherbia albida and Ziziphus mauritania. A two-page spread asks “Prosopis: friend or foe?” – a subject also covered in an article in this issue of Unasylva (see p. 36).

The authors point out that the challenge today is to reverse the land and water degradation trends in the Lake Chad Basin ecosystem through the promotion of modern methods and traditional skills that support sustainable exploitation of natural resources for the benefit of millions of people. The best solutions will derive from local creativity and engagement, and will maintain natural resources and ecosystem functions for future generations. To meet these challenges will require understanding of existing social, economic and ecological systems, in order to find ways to help local populations to improve conditions without putting at risk the long-term stability and resilience of these systems. This book is a wake-up call to identify, document and transmit knowledge and practices that will enable the present and future inhabitants of the Lake Chad Basin to sustain and improve their living conditions.

The future is an ancient lake, prepared by the FAO Interdepartmental Working Group on Biological Diversity for Food and Agriculture, is part of a collection of special books combining high-quality photographs and technical texts, aimed at creating awareness of people’s vital role in biodiversity over the five continents.

Previous PageTop Of Page