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Shepherd feeding his flock with leaves from the Acacia albida, the only tree in the Sahel that keeps its canopy in the dry season. It loses its leaves in the rainy season, when the crops sown together under the trees need more light to grow. The branches that are cut are subsequently used as firewood or to construct fencing for animals. The acacias in general, being pulses, have self-fertilizing roots which lock nitrogen into the soil, thereby lending themselves to agroforestry