We left Saly and drove about 2-3 hours to arrive at Ndangane.
There we made an excursion through the islands of the Sine Saloum with Malé dit DAWARA, piroguier and guide.
Mangroves are evergreen trees or shrubs. They tolerate salt concentrations that are deadly for other plants. Some species are in the brackish water both at low tide and at high tides, and take up air through small openings in the bark of the aerial roots. Along the Senegalese coastline, rivers and islands, many European waterfowl overwinter, such as forest riders, rainworms and shorelines. Also the osprey and some of our smaller songbirds such as the little karekite and the chiffchaff.
The mangrove areas are also very important for many African species. The colorful kingfisher, the giant tern and the sacred ibis are regular customers and thousands of herons find their food in the shallow water. A rare inhabitant is West African manatee (herbivorous manatee), who feels at home in the mangrove area.
The large yield of shrimp and fish from a healthy mangrove area is an important source of food for local residents. They sell part of the catches to the city dwellers. The wood of the mangrove trees is very sturdy and is used for the production of charcoal. It also serves for the construction of houses, huts and fences. Edible oysters grow on the aerial roots, which are a very large source of income for the local population. It is mainly the women who are responsible for the harvest of the oysters.
In order to tackle the problems, a number of Senegalese established the Oceanium Association. That association works together with local residents on an ambitious project to plant mangrove forest and plant other tree species for firewood and fruit. At the same time they organize educational lessons about sustainable use of this rich ecosystem.
For a romantic soul the mangrove areas in Senegal are paradise. For the people who live every day from fishing in this area, paradise is a place to survive.
Les Cordons Bleus
After the excursion in the pirogue, it was time for lunch, and that was what we had in 'Les Cordons Bleus'