As rains begin to fall, Senegal's Fulani herders break camp
The rains have returned to northern Senegal, carpeting a daunting semi-desert landscape in emerald grass.
The downpours are welcome news for thousands of Fulani pastoralists in the region -- doughty people for whom this year was harder than most.
Herders usually move north to south across Senegal as the pasture dries up, before returning north again with the summer rains.
For these semi-nomadic people, livestock is nearly their sole source of income.
But many found themselves caught in the sparsely populated semi-desert -- with little to no grazing for their animals -- when Senegal enacted coronavirus restrictions in March.
Now, with travel restrictions lifted, and with the first rains last week, many of the Fulani have packed up their temporary camps and are returning north.
Families travel slowly by donkey cart, lugging bedding, pots and cans, surrounded by their animals. They camp by the side of the road.
The slow march north is not without its hazards, however.
Long months of drought have hardened the ground, and heavy rains last week caused flash flooding outside the small market town of Barkedji.
Makeshift camps were destroyed, and one family near the town lost 15 head of sheep, a fortune, in the downpour.