Unlocking the secrets of tropical trees

Democratic Republic of the Congo – Tropical forests are magical places. Inside the bustling canopy, huge buttress trees and evergreen plants make a bountiful home for birds, animals and insects, all together completing some of Earth’s most rich and diverse ecosystems. But they currently face unprecedented stress.

As well as battling land degradation and deforestation; rising temperatures, increasingly intense rainfall, and extended periods of drought caused by climate change are already altering how trees behave. While some species have shown capacity to keep up with changing conditions by growing and dispersing their seeds more quickly, others seemingly lack the pace required for their survival.

For Chadrack Kafuti, a 26-year-old forest engineer from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), this dreary scenario calls for…

Some trees can adjust their water use depending on water availability

Chadrack Kafuti

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