addition to tapping the trees for resin, the resineros use the land for other purposes such
as grazing or planting crops.
The resineros work individually collecting the resin from the trees in their plots,
although owners of large plots may pay workers to do all or part of the collecting. Many
times resin tapping is a family affair, with the father and all or some of the male children
contributing. Older sons are often given full responsibility for working the family plot.
Hired workers or family members working in resin tapping may or may not be actual
members of the cooperative. Some cooperatives require that members actually own a
forest plot. Others cooperatives, especially those that have diversified their activities,
allow new members to join that do not own resin plots.
The most common method used to tap pine trees in Honduras is called the cup
and channel method (Figure 1). This was the method COHDEFOR promoted when
training cooperative members to tap resin in the 1970s. The resinero begins at the
bottom of the tree, nailing two pieces of metal channel, called the canal and delantal, to
the tree along with a plastic or metal cup which collects the resin. Above the channel, an
angled wound is scored the width of the collection channel through the bark and
cambium. The scored area of the tree is called the face. The tool used in scoring the tree
is called an espada, and each time the tree is scored is called a pica. A solution of
sulfuric acid is applied to the exposed wood, which heats it and promotes faster resin
flow. As the resinero continues scoring the tree continuously over a long period of time,
the face moves higher up the tree until the resinero cannot reach any higher. Resineros
typically score trees every two or three days, depending on the number of trees being
worked, the time of year, and the flow of resin. Most commonly, after two picas, the