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The caterpillars are rich in protein and are eaten by people, and the sale of roasted or dried mopane worms can contribute significantly to rural economies.
Mopane wood is one of southern Africa's heaviest timbers and is difficult to work because of its hardness. For this reason it has long been used for building houses and fences, as railway sleepers and as pit props.
It can grow to enormous sizes and carbon dating indicates that they may live to be 3,000 years old.
The baobab can store more than 120,000 litres of water, (32,000 US gallons), to endure the harsh drought conditions particular to each region.
The Baobab Tree: Strong as the Elephant Baobab is the common name of a genus (Adansonia) containing eight species of trees, native to Madagascar (the centre of diversity, with six species), mainland Africa and Australia (one species in each).
The mainland African species also occurs on Madagascar, but it is not a native of that country.
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The species name mopane is taken from the local name for the tree.