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The Haunted Forest

The Haunted Forest
Photo Information
Copyright: James Parker (Jamesp) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1369 W: 9 N: 6334] (18906)
Genre: Plants
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-10-11
Categories: Trees
Camera: Canon EOS 1Ds MkII, Canon 70-200 f 2.8 L USM
Exposure: f/7.1, 1/800 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Travelogue: Namibia
Date Submitted: 2008-12-08 6:34
Viewed: 5205
Points: 48
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
In the western portion of Etosha grow the Morings trees - commonly known as the Haunted Forest. The trees look like small baobabs but are not related. Recently the forst has suffered a lot of elephant damage, so many had been toppled over.

Moringa is the only genus in the family Moringaceae. This genus comprises 13 species, all of which are trees that grow in tropical and sub-tropical climates. The taxon name moringa comes from the Tamil/Malayalam word murungakkAi. In Gujarati it is called Saragvo.

The most popular species is Moringa oleifera, a multi-purpose tree originally from Tamil Nadu/Kerala state of India, which is what is commonly referred when the name Moringa is used. This variety is cultivated throughout the tropics. The African variety Moringa stenopetala, is also widely grown, but to a much lesser extent than Moringa oleifera.

According to TreesForLife.org, moringa trees have great potential in combatting extreme poverty and hunger. The nutritious leaves grow quickly, in many different environment types, and can feed people, as well as livestock and sanctuary animals. Surprisingly, the leaves contain complete proteins, which is rare for a plant. And in many developing countries, Moringa is used as a micronutrient powder to aid indigenous diseases.

According to Dr. K. Shaine Tyson of Rocky Mountain Biodiesel Consulting, the defatted meal contains 60% protein, 40% more than soy meal. The high protein leaves can be used as animal fodder and together with the defatted meals, have been shown to increase weight gain in animals by 32% and milk production by 42-55%. The defatted meal can also be used to purify water, settling out sediments and organisms.

Moringa can also provide oil for making biofuels. The seeds contain 30-50% oil, or 112-185 gal/acre/year. The oil contains 65-75% oleic acids and, unlike Jatropha oil, is beneficial for both humans and fuel.

Moringa is drought resistant and can be grown in a wide variety of poor soils, even barren ground, with soil pH between 4.5 and 9.0. The Moringa Oleifera species is said to have originated in the Himalayas, but although the current cultivars can withstand frost, they do not generally survive a hard freeze. It could probably be grown wherever oranges grow successfully.

Moringa holds promise as a sustainable crop which can benefit humans and animals nutritionally, economically and as an energy source.

Evelynn, matatur, zulfu, pekkavalo1, mohaiminawang, jaycee, Alex99, siggi, Dis. Ac., PaulH, eqshannon, CeltickRanger, boreocypriensis, Miss_Piggy, Heaven, Argus, ferranjlloret, Adanac, ramthakur has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Goodness... it doesn't look like much like a tree that would have so many benefits. I suppose that it is only those twigs at the top that produce leaves as they are above the reach of animals??? I've heard that they are going to have to cut down on the numbers of elephants in some places. It breaks my heart but I suppose it must be done... or better yet, cut down on the number of people... oh yeah.... there's always Yellowstone, etc...KABOOOM... problem solved. After your Yellowstone essay we have had a second lecture all on Yellowstone. It has somewhat altered our world view. "Global warming"??? KABOOM.. >change in priorities." "Overpopulation??? KABOOM > problem solved!"

This is a nice very sharp, well exposed image. I like seeing the details on the foreground tree and then seeing more of the area and other trees in the distance.

TFS : )

An interesting and fine looking tree in a perfect capture to record its structural properties James, indeed looks like a Baobab, and would like to see some with the leaves on, if possible.

  • Great 
  • zulfu Gold Star Critiquer [C: 685 W: 0 N: 2] (43)
  • [2008-12-08 7:25]

Hello James, i saw firsly a Moring tree thanks to you. Wonderful capture and useful notes.
TFS and G's,

Hi James,
Good presentation of these interesting trees; well composed, good sharpnes and natural colours.

Hi James,

always waiting for you post, i belive others also. You travel around the world and share very interesting and unique nature photo.Excellent compo.,light and colour.TFS.


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  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2008-12-08 9:42]

Hi James,

Once again a marvelous and highly educational post. This looks like such an unlikely tree to provide so many benefits. Guess it's true - you can't tell a book by its cover. A wonderful view of this unusual looking tree and interesting to see the others in the background. A beautiful scene - colors, clarity, and composition are all superb.


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  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2008-12-08 9:50]

Hi James.
I think this is not three-dimensional picture. It is four-dimensional shot. Great reproduction of the space and volume. Amazing sun lights and natural colouration of the scene. Sharpness and details of the image cannot be better. Bravo.

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  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2008-12-08 9:55]

Hi James. Once again a unusual loking tree. Reading your interesting notes i see the tree can be used for many thngs. A good compostion well done TFS.

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  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2008-12-08 10:28]

Hello James
Outstanding landscape.Beautiful POV and fantastic color.
What a great picture of these amazing trees. The light in the picture is excellent .
Best regards Siggi

Hi James,

What a stange kind of an tree, nice picture and good pov.
interresting notes.


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  • PaulH Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1137 W: 26 N: 3879] (13882)
  • [2008-12-08 12:13]

I read your note with interest James, seems this tree has much potential for doing good in an area of the world that really needs it.
Great shot too, nice and bright light that represents the climate there perfectly and a good use of the portrait format.

I was just out and about in this gloomy weather and ran across some VERY interesting trees..Nothing is coincidental I suppose..I will post it tomorrow as skipped today's...and as I walked across Colorado in 1963, I would frequently find a tree to sleep under and often wake up to a cow....really....now if I had awoke to this tree I would have thought I had died and gone to gnome heaven...A very odd tree that almost comes out of some fantasy movie...(my older kids even watch them)...Very interesting...

Ciao James, those strange trees really seems like baobab, beautiful and interesting composition from savana, interesting note, I like a lot, ciao Silvio

hello James

excellent educational shot (accompagned with the notes),
with fine POV, DOF andf appropriate framing,
beautiful luminosity of the image, excellent sharpness and details, TFS


Hi My brother James, i saw the Haunted Forest, a savana biotope, thanks to you. i wonder the shape of the leafs of these Moringa trees.
TFS and cheers,

Hallo James
This is such a stimulating scene. Looking at it makes me miss somebody I don't even know. An image I would print, frame and put it on my wall. It is really beautiful. There is just such a variety of colours and elements to appreciate in this photo. The cloudless blue sky, the different shapes and sizes of these “Baobab-look-a-like” trees as well as the dried grassland. One's eyes tend to follow the curves and shape of the main subject, observe and appreciate all the interesting details displayed. The landscape is really wonderful. Great sharpness and exposure. A lovely presentation. It was very interesting to read that although these trees looks like the Baobab they are not related. Thanks for sharing. Best regards

Hi James!

These trees look like sculptures or fingers pointing to the sky. I imagine the effect with a sunset sky and light. Your notes are very interesting, too.

Kind regards


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  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2008-12-09 0:55]

Hello James,
I have enjoyed viewing this photo as well as reading your note. This shot depicts the African Moringa tree with fine sharpness and lighting in a composition that shows the habitat well too. The note is both informative and has a hopeful tone for the future of africa.
Kind regards,

Hi James,
interesting species, excellent landscape of this Haunted Fores. The species in your pic it is Moringa oleifera???
TFS. Ferran

Hi James!

Wonderful shot, we don't see trees like this around here :)
Composed well and so much details in the tree. TFS!

Best regards,

  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2008-12-09 5:30]

Hello James,
What fantastic possiblities from this strange looking tree. What a great image with splendid notes My Friend, thank you.

I see abstract sculpture in those tree shapes in the foreground, James.
The place does look desolate, especially with those dry grasses on the ground.
The mood of the place comes across strongly in this picture.
Thanks and regards.

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  • gannu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 988 W: 4 N: 3277] (14761)
  • [2008-12-09 8:16]

Hello James, What a great landscape here. superb clarity and nice view. Great DoF and thanks for sharing this. Ganesh

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  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2008-12-09 13:59]

That is one knobbly tree! :-)
Very well taken.
Again, the contrasty light works very well here.
Excellent composition.

Well done James!


Hello James

They certainly appear a little bizarre.
I swear I see an arm and hand on one tree and what looks like an upside down human leg.But that is my overworked imagination,lol.
Very good capture to show the setting that they grow in.
I do not see many leaves though.
Very well focused showing excellent detail.

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