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Sunday, April 27, 2008

Honduras rosewood

Honduras rosewood

Common Name: * Honduras rosewood
Scientific Name: * Dalbergia stevensonii
Categories: * Music, Timber
Conservation Status: * Not evaluated

This timber species grows to a height of between 15 and 30 m and has a diameter of about 1 m.

Why is this species important?

The timber of Honduras rosewood is highly valued on the world market particularly for use in musical instrument manufacture. Exports have taken place since 1841.

Where is it found?

D. stevensonii is found primarily in Belize in Central America where it is restricted to the southern part of the country. It occurs in fairly large patches along rivers but also on inter-riverine and drier areas, mostly between the Sarstoon and Monkey rivers.

How do people use it?

D. stevensonii produces a timber that is hard, heavy, durable and very resonant. In general the denser a wood is, the greater the volume of the note that can be produced acoustically from it, when struck or otherwise made to vibrate in air. As a dense wood, D. stevensonii produces a clear, loud note when struck and has found itself most highly valued in the production of orchestral xylophones and claves. Owing to its hardness and durability it is used as fingerboards for the violin family of instruments. It is also used to make veneers for fine furniture and cabinets, the backs of brushes, knife handles and for fine turnery.
For more information on music woods, try the SoundWood Project page.

Why is it threatened?

The conservation status of Dalbergia stevensonii has not been evaluated using the IUCN Red List categories and criteria but felling for timber has depleted stocks of the species Dalbergia stevensonii and it is likely that this species would qualify for the IUCN Red List.

What conservation action is needed?

An evaluation of the conservation status of Dalbergia stevensonii using the IUCN Red List categories and criteria is required.Certified sustainable forest management to Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) standards in areas where it is harvested should be the goal.FFI is supporting sustainable forest management and income generation in areas adjacent to the Golden Stream Corridor Preserve, in Toledo District, as part of the overall biodiversity strategy for the area. A training programme is being provided for indigenous communities to develop sustainable forestry management and a tree nursery is being developed for Dalbergia stevensonii and other species.


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