Friday, 2 January 2015


                                                DESERTS OF THE WORLD
(A)Cold Deserts

Name & Location
Physical Features
Plants & Animals
Special Features
Coast of Peru and Chile
Covered by sand dunes and pebbles. one of the driest area on earth
Bunchgrass, cardon cactus, tamaruga  tree lizards, llama, Peruvian fox, nesting area for many sea birds
Only a few thousand people (mostly) live in the inland desert area. Large deposits of sodium nitrate are found in the desert. Sodium nitrate is used to make gunpowder
Northern China and Southern Mangolia

Covered by Sandy Soil and areas of small stones called ‘Gobi’
Camel’s thorn, grasses Bactrian bamel, gazelle, gerbil, jerboa, lizards, onager, wolf
Crossed by Genghis Khan in the early 13th century .Many nomads now settling on government –runfarms.
Great Basin
Western United States(Idaho, Nevada, Oregon and Utah)
Covered by sand, gravel and clay.
 Many mountains ranges, basins and large expanses of salt flats.
Greasewood, Sagebrush, shadscale bighorn sheep, jackrabbit, pocket mouse, poor-will, pronghorn antelope, sage thrasher, side-blotched lizard
Great Salt Lake located here.
Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan
Covered by coarse gray soil, stony pavement and salt flats.
Grasses ,pistachio trees, shrubs monitor izard, onager, oryx, scorpion
World’s largest slat flat located here.
Costs of Southwestern Africa
Covered by Sand dunes along the coast and gravel farther inland.
Aloe, bunchgrass, lichens, welwitschia darkling beetle, fring-toed lizard, golden mole, jackal, sidewinder, viper
Coast of the Namib Desert is world’s greatest source of gemstones.
Takla Makan
Western china
Covered by sand dunes and rocky soil.
Grasses, shrubs Bactrian camel, jerboa, long-eared hedgehog, gazelle
The word ‘Takla Makan’ means ‘place from which there is no return, Crossed by Marco Polo in the 13th century.
Parts of the Middle East and Southwestern Russia
Covered mostly by extensive stretches of sand dunes.
Alhagi shrub, saxaul tree, sedges, thick ground cover desert tortoise, gazelle, gerbil, saiga antelope
Crossed by caravans following silk route from China in Europe in ancient times.
The great city of Samarkand, once a cultural and religious center of central Asia, was located here.
(B)Hot Deserts
Arabian Peninsula

Covered almost entirely by sand; has some of the most extensive stretches of sand dunes in the world.
Acacia, oleander, saltbush desert locust, dromedary camel, gazelle, lizard ,jackal, oryx
Nomadic Bedouin tribes have travelled through the Arabian Desert for thousands of years.
Australian (Great Sandy, Victoria, Simpson, Gibson and Sturt are stony )
2,300,000km2 (1/3 of Australia)
Great  Sandy ,Victoria and Simpson are sandy; Gibson and Sturt are stony.
Acacia, casuarinas tree, eucalyptus, saltbush, spinifex grass blue –tongued lizard, dingo, fat-tailed mouse, kangaroo, marsupial mole, rabbit-eared bandicoot, sand goanna, spinifex hopping mouse, throny devil
Aborigines have lived in Australian deserts for over 30,000 years.
Northern Central Mexico and Southwestern United State (Arizona, New Mexico, Texas )
High plateau covered by stony areas and sandy soil. Many mountains and mesas.
Cacti, chihuahuan flax, creosote bush, lechugilla, mesquite, Mexican gold poppy coyote, diamondback rattlesnake, javelin, kangaroo rat, roadrunner
Largest North American desert ,Big Bend National Park located here; more species of birds seen in Big Bend than in any other National Park in the U.S
Southwestern Africa
Covered by sand dunes and gravel plains.
Acacia, aloe, gazelle, gerbil, ground squirrel, hyena, jackel, sandgrouse, springbok
Bushman have lived in the Kalahari for 20,000 years.
Covered by sand and soil
Cardon cactus, creosote bush, paloverde armadillo, cavy, jaguarundi , puma, tinamou, tuco-tuco
Very similar to the Sonoran Desert.
Southwestern United State (Arizona, California, Nevada)
Covered by sandy soil, gravelly pavement, and salt flats.
Creosote bush, desert sand verbena, Joshua tree, mesquite bighorn sheep, chuckwalla, coyote, jack-rabbit, sidewinder, zebra-tailed lizard
Death Valley located in this desert.
Northern Africa
Covered by mountains, rocky areas, gravel plains, salt flats, huge  areas of dunes. Areas in the central sometimes get no rain for years at a time.
Acacia, grasses, tamarisks addax antelope, dorcas  gazelle, fennec fox, horned viper ,jackal, jerboa, sand-grouse, spiny- yailed lizard 
Largest desert in the world. Fewer than 2 million inhabitants (mostly nomads such as the Tuareg). Crossed by Arab caravans since the 10th century.
Southwestern United States (Arizona, California) and parts of Mexico (Baja Peninsula, Sonara)
Covered by sand, soil, and gravelly pavement. Gets more rain than any other North American desert.
Agave, coulter’s globe-mallow, creosote bush, desert mariposa lily, mesquite, ocotillo, paloverde, saguaro coati, elf owl, gila monster, kangaroo rat, roadrunner, side-winder, tarantula
Mostly complex animal-plant community of any desert.
One of the most beautiful deserts in the world.
India and Pakistan
Majority of desert covered by sand dunes; rest covered by gravel plains
Acacia, euphorbias, grasses, shrubs black buck, dromedary camel , great Indian bustard, Indian spiny-tailed lizard, jacket, sandgrouse
Small villages of ten to twenty houses scattered throughout the Thar.

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