Species Couratari guianensis
Environmental Profile This species is reported to be relatively
secure within its natural habitat in most areas in its range,
including Panama. Its status in the wild is currently listed as
unknown because of insufficient information in Brazil, Colombia,
French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, Surinam, and Venezuela (Source - World
Conservation Monitoring Center - 1992 ).
The species is reported to be demonstrably widespread, abundant,
and secure globally, although it may be quite rare in parts
of its range, especially at the periphery (Source - The Nature
Conservancy - Rank of relative endangerment based mainly on
the number of occurrences of the species worldwide).
Distribution The species is reported to be found in the hill forests
in Costa Rica, Panama, and adjacent Colombia, as well as in
forests of diverse types from Venezuela and the Guianas to Amazonian
Product Sources The International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO)
reports that the species is an important source of timber.
The timber is reported to be exported in low quantities.
Common Names: Capa de tabaco, Coco cabuyo, Congolo garapelo,
Couatari, Imbirema, Ingiepipa, Ingipipa, Inguipipa, Mahot, Mahot
cigare, Tabari, Tampipio, Tauari, Tauary, Wadara
Regions of Origin: Central America, Latin America.
Countries of Origin: French Guiana, Guyana, Brazil,
Panama, Colombia, Venezuela, Peru, Suriname, Costa Rica
Tree Data Couratari trees are reported to attain heights of up
to 120 feet (37 m). They usually develop stout buttresses,
with trunk diameters of 36 to 48 inches (90 to 120 cm).
Heartwood Color The heartwood is cream or cream white in color,
with a pinkish or yellowish tinge. The heartwood and sapwood are
Grain The grain is straight or uniformly interlocked. The material
is reported to exhibit a fine but faintly visible silver figure.
Texture The texture is generally coarse to medium.
Odor Some species of the Couratari genus are reported to possess
a fetid odor.
Natural Durability The material is reported to have very little
or negligible natural resistance to decay, and is susceptible
to attack by termites and dry wood insects.
Resistance to Impregnation The heartwood and sapwood are reported
to absorb preservatives readily in both pressure and open tank systems.
Silica Content Silica levels of 0.8% (ovendry weight) have been
reported in some Couratari timbers. Silica level of 0.05% is
generally believed to be enough to affect the machining properties
Strength Properties Bending strength in the air-dry condition (about
12 percent moisture content) is high - comparable to Teak.
Strength in compression parallel to grain is in the high range.
Other species in this range include Teak, White oak, and Hard
maple. It is heavy. The wood has high density.
Blunting Effect The wood is reported to exert moderate to high blunting
effect on cutters due to high silica content.
Carving The material is rated as fair to good in all machining operations.
Cutting Resistance Some Couratari species contain high amounts of
silica which may affect sawing.
Gluing The wood is reported to have good gluing characteristics.
Luster The luster is reported to vary from low to high.
Nailing The timber holds nails moderately well.
Planing The material is rated as fair to good in all machining operations,
including planing. It is reported to respond fairly well to
most tools, but specially-tipped cutters may be required in some
Couratari timbers which contain high amounts of silica.
Polishing The wood is reported to finish well.
Ease of Drying The wood dries at a moderate rate, with little degrade.
Drying Defects The wood shows a slight tendency to check and warp
T/R Ratio 1.78 This ratio is more meaningful if it is used
together with actual shrinkage data in the tangential and radial directions.
(Refer to the Numerical Values window)