Presentation on theme: "What is a Desert Like? The desert is a land of extremes: extreme heat and extreme dryness; sudden flash floods and cold nights. Because deserts are such."— Presentation transcript:
1What is a Desert Like?The desert is a land of extremes: extreme heat and extreme dryness; sudden flash floods and cold nights. Because deserts are such a harsh environment, deserts often have names likes "Death Valley," "the empty quarter," and "the place from where there is no return."
2DrynessDeserts are usually very, very dry. Even the wettest deserts get less than ten inches of precipitation a year.In most places, rain falls steadily throughout the year. But in the desert, there may be only a few periods of rains per year with a lot of time between rains.
3Desert in BloomWhen it does rain, there may be quite a downpour! After the rain, desert flowers bloom.
4Hot During the Day, Cool at Night Everyone knows that during the day many deserts are hot, very hot. Temperatures in excess of 100 degrees fahrenheit are not uncommon. Yet at night, the same deserts can have temperatures fall into the 40s or 50s? Why?Other biomes are insulated by their humidity (water vapor in the air). Temperate deciduous forests, for example, may have 80 percent humidity or more during the day. This water reflects and absorbs sunlight and the energy it brings. At night the water acts like a blanket, trapping heat inside the forest. Since deserts usually have only between 10 and 20 percent humidity to trap temperatures and have so few trees and other vegetation to retain heat, they cool down rapidly when the sun sets, and heat up quickly after the sun rises.
5Believe it or not, deserts come in two varieties: hot and cold. Types of DesertsBelieve it or not, deserts come in two varieties: hot and cold.Hot DesertsCold Deserts
6Hot Deserts of the World-1 The main form of precipitation in a hot desert is rain. But that's only ten inches or less of rain per year.Arabian, Australian, Chihuahuan, Kalahari, Mojave, Monte, Sahara, Sonoran, Thar.
7Hot Deserts of the World-2 Name LocationSizePhysical FeaturesSome Plants & AnimalsSpecial FactsArabian Arabian Peninsula900,000 mi2 2,300,000 km2Covered 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) Australia890,00 mi2 2,300,000 km2 (1/3 of Australia) Great Sandy, Victoria, and Simpson are sandy; Gibson and Sturt are stony.acacia, casuarina tree, eucalyptus, saltbush, spinifex grassblue-tongued lizard, dingo, fat-tailed mouse, kangaroo, marsupial mole, rabbit-eared bandicoot, sand goanna, spinifex hopping mouse, throny devil Aborigines have lived in the Australian deserts for over 30,000 years.
8Hot Deserts of the World-3 Chihuahuan North Central Mexico and Southwestern United States (Arizona, New Mexico, Texas)175,000 mi2 455,000 km2High plateau covered by stony areas and sandy soil. Many mountains and mesas.cacti, chihuahuan flax, creosote bush, lechuguilla, mesquite, mexican gold poppy coyote, diamondback rattlesnake, javelina, kangaroo rat, roadrunnerLargest 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.Kalahari Southwestern Africa200,000 mi2 520,000 km2Covered by sand dunes and gravel plains.acacia, aloe gazelle, gerbil, ground squirrel, hyena, jackel, sandgrouse, springbokBushman have lived in the Kalahari for 20,000 years.
9Hot Deserts of the World-4 Mojave Southwestern United States (Arizona, California, Nevada)25,000 mi2 65,000 km2Covered by sandy soil, gravelly pavement, and salt flats.creosote bush, desert sand verbena, joshua tree, mesquite bighorn sheep, chuckwalla, coyote, jackrabbit, sidewinder, zebra-tailed lizardDeath Valley located in this desert.Monte Argentina125,000 mi2 325,000 km2Covered by sand and soilcardon cactus, creosote bush, paloverde armadillo, cavy, jaguarundi, puma, tinamou, tuco-tucoVery similar to the Sonoran DesertSahara Northern Africa3,500,000 mi2 9,100,000 km2Covered 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, sandgrouse, 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.
10Hot Deserts of the World-5 Sonoran Southwestern United States (Arizona, California) and parts of Mexico (Baja Peninsula, Sonora)120,000 mi2 312,000 km2Covered by sand, soil, and gravelly pavement. Gets more rain than any other North American desert.agave, coulter's globemallow, creosote bush, desert mariposa lily, mesquite, ocotillo, paloverde, saguaro coati, elf owl, gila monster, kangaroo rat, pack rat, roadrunner, sidewinder, tarantula Most complex animal-plant community of any desert. One of the most beautiful deserts in the world.Thar India and Pakistan77,000 mi2 200,000 km2Majority of desert covered by sand dunes; rest covered by gravel plainsacacia, euphorbias, grasses, shrubs black buck, dromedary camel, great Indian bustard, Indian spiny-tailed lizard, jackel, sandgrouse Small villages of ten to twenty houses scattered throughout the Thar.
11Cold Deserts of the World-1 The main form of precipitation in a cold desert is snow -- but only ten inches or less per year.Antarctica, Atacama, Gobi, Great Basin, Iranian, Namib, Takla Makan, Turkestan,
12Cold Deserts of the World-2 Name LocationSizePhysical FeaturesSome Plants & AnimalsSpecial FactsAntarctica Continent of Antarctica5,500,000 mi2 14,245,000 km2Antarctica is about 98% thick continental ice sheet and 2% barren rock.small amounts of lichen and mossseal, penguin, albatross, skuaThe coldest, windiest, driest continent.Atacama Coasts of Peru and Chile54,000 mi2 140,000 km2Covered by sand dunes and pebbles. One of the driest areas on earth.bunchgrass, cardon cactus, tamaruga treeslizards, llama, Peruvian fox, nesting area for many seabirdsOnly a few thousand people (mostly farmers) live in the inland desert areas.Large deposits of sodium nitrate are found in the desert. Sodium nitrate is used to make gunpowder.
13Cold Deserts of the World-3 Gobi Northern China and Southern Mongolia450,000 mi2 1,200,000 km2Covered by sandy soil and areas of small stones called "gobi."camel's thorn, grassesbactrian bamel, gazelle, gerbil, jerboa, lizards, onager, wolfCrossed by Genghis Khan in the early 13th century. Many nomads now settling on government-run farms.Great Basin Western United States (Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, and Utah)158,000 mi2 411,000 km2Covered by sand, gravel, and clay.Many moutains ranges, basins, and large expanses of salt flats.greasewood, sagebrush, shadscalebighorn sheep, jackrabbit, pocket mouse, poor-will, pronghorn antelope, sage thrasher, side-blotched lizardGreat Salt Lake located here.
14Cold Deserts of the World-4 Iranian Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan150,000 mi2 390,000 km2Covered by coarse gray soil, stony pavement, and salt flats.grasses, pistachio trees, shrubsmonitor lizard, onager, oryx, scorpionWorld's largest salt flat located here.Namib Coasts of Southwestern Africa52,000 mi2 135,000 km2Covered by sand dunes along the coast and gravel farther inland.aloe, bunchgrass, lichens, welwitschiadarkling beetle, fringe-toed lizard, golden mole, jackal, sidewinder, viper, web-footed geckoCoast of the Namib Desert is world's greatest source of gemstones.
15Cold Deserts of the World-5 Takla Makan Western China600,000 mi2 1,600,000 km2Covered by sand dunes and rocky soil.grasses, shrubsbactrian camel, jerboa, long-eared hedgehog, gazelleThe word "Takla Makan" means "place from which there is no return."Crossed by Marco Polo in the 13th Century.Turkestan Parts of the Middle East and Southwestern Russia215,000 mi2 559,000 km2Covered mostly by extensive stretches of sand dunes.alhagi shrub, saxaul tree, sedges, thick ground coverdesert tortoise, gazelle, gerbil, saiga antelopeCrossed 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.
16Where Are Deserts Located? Many deserts are found in bands along 30 degrees latitude north and 30 degrees latitude south (between the red lines on the map).
17LocationSome deserts located by mountains and are caused by the "rainshadow" effect. As air moves up over a mountain range, it gets cold and loses the ability to hold moisture -- so it rains or snows. When the air moves down the other side of the mountain, it gets warmer. Warm air can hold lots of moisture, so it doesn't rain as much, and a desert is formed.
18World's Largest Deserts Deserts of the WorldThe graph below compares the sizes of the world's largest deserts.World's Largest DesertsDesertLocationSquare MilesSquare KilometersAntarctica5,500,00014,245,000SaharaNorth Africa3,500,0009,065,000GobiMongolia-China500,0001,295,000KalahariSouthern Africa225,000582,000Great VictoriaAustralia150,000338,500Great Sandy
20Deserts of North America-2 Name LocationSizePhysical FeaturesSome Plants & AnimalsSpecial FactsChihuahuan North Central Mexico and Southwestern United States (Arizona, New Mexico, Texas)175,000 mi2 455,000 km2High plateau covered by stony areas and sandy soil. Many mountains and mesas.cacti, chihuahuan flax, creosote bush, lechuguilla, mesquite, mexican gold poppycoyote, diamondback rattlesnake, javelina, kangaroo rat, roadrunnerLargest 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.Great Basin Western United States (Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, and Utah)158,000 mi2 411,000 km2Covered by sand, gravel, and clay.Many moutains ranges, basins, and large expanses of salt flats.greasewood, sagebrush, shadscalebighorn sheep, jackrabbit, pocket mouse, poor-will, pronghorn antelope, sage thrasher, side-blotched lizardGreat Salt Lake located here.
21Deserts of North America-3 Mojave Southwestern United States (Arizona, California, Nevada)25,000 mi2 65,000 km2Covered by sandy soil, gravelly pavement, and salt flats.creosote bush, desert sand verbena, joshua tree, mesquitebighorn sheep, chuckwalla, coyote, jackrabbit, sidewinder, zebra-tailed lizardDeath Valley located in this desert.Sonoran Southwestern United States (Arizona, California) and parts of Mexico (Baja Peninsula, Sonora)120,000 mi2 312,000 km2Covered by sand, soil, and gravelly pavement. Gets more rain than any other North American desert.agave, coulter's globemallow, creosote bush, desert mariposa lily, mesquite, ocotillo, paloverde, saguarocoati, elf owl, gila monster, kangaroo rat, pack rat, roadrunner, sidewinder, tarantulaMost complex animal-plant community of any desert.
22Desert PlantsDeserts are the home to many living things. In fact, deserts are second only to tropical rainforests in the variety of plant and animal species that live there.How do you think plants grow in a place that is very, very dry?
23AdaptationsMany of the fascinating features of desert plants are adaptations -- traits that help the plant survive in its harsh environment. Desert plants have two main adaptations: Ability to collect and store water Features that reduce water loss Desert plants often look different than plants in any other biome.
24Saguaro What part of the Saguaro Cactus stores water? The stem of the Saguaro Cactus stores all of its water. The stem is green. Photosynthesis occurs in the top layer of the stem instead of in leaves. This plant has another adaptation that is hidden from us. This is its large net of roots -- that extend far away from its trunk. How would these roots help a desert plant? The roots collect water after rain. Stored in the pleated expandable stem, the water keeps the saguaro alive until the next rain. Saguaro fruit is used in jam and woody skeletons are used in building materials. The Saguaro only grows in the Sonoran Desert.What part of the Saguaro Cactus stores water?
25Barrel Cactus How do the pleats of the Barrel Cactus help it survive? The pleated shape of the Barrel Cactus allows it to expand when it rains and store water in its spongy tissue. It shrinks in size during dry times as it uses the stored water. How do the pleats of the Barrel Cactus help it survive?
26Old Man CactusThe white hairy surface of the Old Man Cactus helps the plant reflect the hot desert sun.Why is the Old Man Cactus so hairy?
27Prickly Pear CactusSince many desert plants store water in their spongy tissue, animals will eat them for the moisture. The thorns keep them safe from many animal predators. You can find lots of Prickly Pear Cactus in the Chihuahuan desert.Why do cacti like the Prickly Pear have so many thorns?
28Dragon Tree How did the Dragon Tree get its name? The Dragon Tree is not from the American deserts. It is from the Canary Islands. It has a sap that hardens to a dark red. People call the sap "Dragon's Blood." The sap is sometimes used as a fake stone in jewelry. How did the Dragon Tree get its name?
29Fish Hook CactusThe fish hook shaped spines of the Fish Hook Cactus help divert heat and shade the growing tip of the plant. Many cacti lean further toward the sun as they grow. Some may eventually uproot themselves.How do the thorns of the Fish Hook Cactus help it survive?
30Desert SpoonSucculent leaves can store water inside them. These leaves are usually thick and tough to reduce water loss. The Desert Spoon has leaves that are trimmed and polished for sales as curios. The papago and Pima Indians use them in baskets. The woody stems contain a sugary sap that can be fermented into a drink that is called sotol. Many desert plants, like the Desert Spoon, are succulent. What does that mean?
31AloeThe waxy surface of the aloe plant acts like a plastic wrapper, keeping precious water inside. For centuries, the juice of the aloe plant has been used by Native Americans as a medicine. Today, doctors recognize the healing properties of the Aloe plant. Many people keep an aloe plant in their kitchen. Its juice is helpful to soothe the pain of burns.Why do so many desert plants, like the Aloe, have waxy surfaces?
32Joshua Tree Are there trees in the desert? The Joshua Tree grows in the Mojave desert. It is a large desert plant with spiky leaves. It also has a fruit which is food for desert animals.Are there trees in the desert?
33YuccaThe Yucca is an amazingly hardy plant. Not only does it grow in the desert, but it can grow in a wide variety of other climates. Perhaps you have one growing somewhere near you.Have you seen a Yucca in your neighborhood?
34Desert AnimalsAnimals in the desert must survive in a hostile environment. Intense heat, searing sun, and lack of water are just a few of the challenges facing desert animals. Animals that live in the hot desert have many adaptations. Some animals never drink, but get their water from seeds (some can contain up to 50% water) and plants. Many animals are nocturnal, sleeping during the hot day and only coming out at night to eat and hunt. Some animals rarely spend any time above ground. Spadefoot toads spend nine months of every year underground!
35Addax-1 Class: Mammalia: Mammals Diet: Plants Order: Artiodactyla: Even-toed Ungulates Size: body:1.3 m (4 1/4 ft), tail: cm (9 3/ /4 in)Family: Bovidae: BovidsConservation Status: VulnerableScientific Name: Addax nasomaculatusHabitat: sandy and stony desertRange: Africa: E. Mauritania, W. Mali; patchy distribution in Algeria, Chad, Niger and Sudan
36Addax-2With its heavy head and shoulders and slender hindquarters, the addax is a clumsy-looking animal. Its coloration varies widely between individuals, but there is always a mat of dark-brown hair on the forehead, and both sexes have thin, spiral horns. Addax are typical desert-dwellers, with their large, widespreading hoofs, adapted to walking on soft sand, and they never drink, obtaining all the moisture they need from their food, which includes succulents. Their nomadic habits are closely linked to the sporadic rains, for addax appear to have a special ability to find the patches of desert vegetation that suddenly sprout after a downpour. They are normally found in herds of 20 to 200. The female produces 1 young after a gestation of 8 1/2 months.
38Cactus Wren-2The largest North American wren, the cactus wren has a distinctive white stripe over each eye and a longer-than-usual tail, which it does not normally cock up. Cactus wrens frequent areas with thorny shrubs, cacti and trees and forage mostly on the ground around vegetation for insects, such as beetles, ants, wasps, and grasshoppers, and occasionally lizards or small frogs. Some cactus fruit and berries and seeds are also eaten. The wrens can run swiftly but usually fly if traveling any distance. Nests are made for roosting in at night and for shelter in bad weather. The breeding season begins in March or April, and there may be two or three broods. The nest is a bulky, domed structure, made of plant fibers, twigs and dead leaves, with a tubelike side entrance that can be up to 15 cm (6 in) long; it is lined with fur or feathers. The nest is situated on a prickly cholla cactus or amid the sharp leaves of a yucca or other thorny bush. From 3 to 7 eggs, usually 4 to 5, are laid and then incubated by the female for about 16 days.
40Desert Lark-2The plumage of the desert lark perfectly matches the color of the desert soil and is the best example of soil camouflage in birds. The very dark subspecies, A. d. annae, blends with the black larval sand of central Arabia, while the pale race, A. d. isabellina, does not stray from areas of white sand.The nest is usually built up against a rock or tuft of grass and is reinforced on the windward side by small decorative pebbles. In the harsh desert interior, 3 eggs are laid, while 4 or 5 may be produced at the desert edge.
41Dingo-1 Class: Mammalia: Mammals Diet: Large mammals Order: Carnivora: Carnivores Size: body:about 1.5 m (5 ft), tail: about 35 cm (13 3/4 in)Family: Canidae: Dogs, FoxesConservation Status: Non-threatenedScientific Name: Canis dingoHabitat: sandy desert to wet and dry sclerophyll forestRange: Australia
42Dingo-2The dingoes are descended from domesticated dogs introduced by the aboriginal human inhabitants of Australia many thousands of years ago. In anatomy and behavior, dingoes are indistinguishable from domestic dogs, but the two have interbred for so long that there are now few pure dingoes. They live in family groups but may gather into bigger packs to hunt large prey.Originally they fed on kangaroos, but when white settlers started to kill off the kangaroos, dingoes took to feeding on introduced sheep and rabbits. A litter of 4 or 5 young is born in a burrow or rock crevice after a gestation of about 9 weeks. The young are suckled for 2 months and stay with their parents for at least a year.
43Fat Sand Rat-1 Class: Mammalia: Mammals Diet: Seeds, vegetation Order: Rodentia: Rodents Size: body: cm (5 1/ /4 in), tail: cm (4 3/4 - 6 in)Family: Gerbillinae: GerbilsConservation Status: Non-threatenedScientific Name: Psammomys obesusHabitat: sandy desertRange: Algeria, east to Saudi Arabia
44Fat Sand Rat-2The fat sand rat overcomes the problem of the unpredictability of desert food supplies by laying down a thick layer of fat all over its body when food is abundant. It then lives off this fat when food is short. Active day and night, this gerbil darts about collecting seeds and other vegetation which it carries back to its burrow. In early spring, a brood chamber is made and lined with finely shredded vegetation, and the first litter of the year is born in March. There are usually 3 to 5 young in a litter, and the breeding season continues until late summer.
45Fennec Fox-1 Class: Mammalia: Mammals Diet: Small mammals Order: Carnivora: Carnivores Size: body: cm (14 1/ in), tail: cm (7 1/ /4 in)Family: Canidae: Dogs, FoxesConservation Status: Non-threatenedScientific Name: Vulpes zerdaHabitat: desert, semidesertRange: North Africa: Morocco to Egypt, south to Northern Niger, Sudan; east to Sinai Peninsula and Kuwait
46Fennec Fox-2The smallest of the foxes, the fennec fox is identified by its relatively huge ears. It shelters in burrows it digs in the sand and is generally active at night, when it preys on small rodents, birds, insects and lizards.
47Gila Monster-1 Class: Reptilia: Reptiles Diet: Small mammals, eggs Order: Squamata: Lizards and SnakesSize: body: cm (17 3/ in)Family: Helodermatidae: Gila MonsterConservation Status: Non-threatenedScientific Name: Heloderma suspectumHabitat: arid and semiarid areas with some vegetationRange: Southwestern U.S.A.: Southern Utah, Arizona to New Mexico; Mexico
48Gila Monster-2This formidable, heavy-bodied lizard has a short, usually stout tail, in which it can store fat for use in periods of food shortage. It is gaudily patterned and has brightly colored beadlike scales on its back. The gila lives on the ground and shelters under rocks or in a burrow, which it digs itself or takes over from another animal. It is primarily nocturnal but may emerge during the day in spring. The two members of the gila monster family are the only venomous lizards.The venom is produced in glands in the lower jaw and enters the mouth via grooved teeth at the front of the lower jaw; it flows into the victim as the lizard chews. The gila also eats the eggs of birds and reptiles. Gila monsters mate in the summer, and the female lays 3 to 5 eggs some time later, in the autumn or winter.
49Great Jerboa-1 Class: Mammalia: Mammals Diet: Seeds, insects Order: Rodentia: RodentsSize: body: cm (3 1/2 - 6 in), tail: cm (6 1/ /2 in)Family: Dipodidae: JerboasConservation Status: Non-threatenedScientific Name: Allactaga majorHabitat: Allactaga majorRange: Russia: Ukraine, east to China
50Great Jerboa-2The great jerboa and 8 of the 9 other species in the genus Allactaga have five toes on each hind foot. Great jerboas feed on seeds and insects, which they find by combing through the sand with the long slender claws on their front feet. They are nocturnal, spending the day in burrows; they also hibernate in burrows. One or two litters are produced each year.
51Great Mouse-Tailed Bat-1 Class: Mammalia: MammalsDiet: Flying insectsOrder: Chiroptera: BatsSize: body:6 - 8 cm (2 1/4 - 3 in), wingspan: cm (6 3/ in), tail: cm (2 1/4 - 3 in)Family: Rhinopomatidae: Mouse-tailed BatsConservation Status: Non-threatenedScientific Name: Rhinopoma microphyllumHabitat: treeless arid landRange: Middle and Near East
52Great Mouse-Tailed Bat-2 Colonies of thousands of mouse-tailed bats occupy roosts in large ruined buildings, often palaces and temples. They feed exclusively on insects, and in those areas where a cool season temporarily depletes the food supply, the bats may enter a deep sleep resembling torpor. Prior to this, they lay down thick layers of fat which may weigh as much as the bats themselves, and with this they survive for many weeks with neither food nor water. As they sleep, the accumulated fat is used up, and by the time the cold season is passed, nothing of it remains. Mouse-tailed bats mate at the beginning of spring, and the female produces a single offspring after a gestation of about 4 months. The young bat is weaned at 8 weeks but does not attain sexual maturity until its second year.
53Lappet-Faced Vulture-1 Class: Aves: BirdsDiet: CarrionOrder: Falconiformes: Birds of Prey Size: body: cm ( in)Family: Accipitridae: Vultures, Eagles, HawksConservation Status: Non-threatenedScientific Name: Torgos tracheliotusHabitat: bush, desertRange: Northern, southern, and eastern Africa
54Lappet-Faced Vulture-2 The lappet-faced is a typical Old World vulture with perfect adaptations for a scavenging life. Its powerful hooked bill cuts easily into carrion, and its bare head and neck save lengthy feather-cleaning after plunging deep into a messy carcass.The immense broad wings, with widely spaced primary feathers, are ideal for soaring and gliding for long periods, using few wing beats. No real mating display has been observed. A huge stick nest is made at the top of a tree or on a crag, and the female lays 1 egg.
55Sidewinder-1 Class: Reptilia: Reptiles Diet: Small mammals Order: Squamata: Lizards and Snakes Size: body: cm ( /4 in)Family: Crotalidae: Pit VipersConservation Status: Non-threatenedScientific Name: Crotalus cerastesHabitat: desert, rocky hillsidesRange: Southwestern U.S.A.: Southern California, Nevada and Utah, south to Mexico
56Sidewinder-2A small agile snake, the sidewinder has a distinctive hornlike projection over each eye. It is chiefly nocturnal and takes refuge in the burrow of another animal or under a bush during the day. At night it emerges to hunt its prey, mainly small rodents, such as pocket mice and kangaroo rats, and lizards. A desert inhabitant, this snake moves with a sideways motion, known as sidewinding, thought to be the most efficient mode of movement for a snake on sand. It throws its body into lateral waves, only two short sections of it touching the ground.All the snake's weight, therefore, is pushing against the ground at these points, and this provides the leverage to move it sideways. As it travels, the snake leaves a trail of parallel J-shaped markings. An ideal form of movement in open, sparsely vegetated country, sidewinding has the advantage of reducing contact between the snake's body and the hot sand. Sidewinders mate in April or May, and the female gives birth to 5 to 18 live young about 3 months later.
57Thorny Devil-1 Class: Reptilia: Reptiles Diet: Ants, termites Order: Squamata: Lizards and Snakes Size: body:16 cm (6 1/4 in)Family: Agamidae: Agamid LizardsConservation Status: Non-threatenedScientific Name: Moloch horridusHabitat: arid scrub, desertRange: Australia: Western, North and South, Queensland
58Thorny Devil-2The grotesque thorny devil is the only species in its genus and one of the strangest of lizards. Its body bristles with large, conical spines, and it has spines above each eye and a spiny hump behind its head. The tail, too, is spiny. It is a slow-moving creature, which forages for its food, mainly ants and termites, on the ground. The female thorny devil lays 3 to 10 eggs, usually 8, in November or December. The newly hatched young are tiny, spiny replicas of their parents.
70Desert Links-1Principal Deserts of the World - This site lists location, size, and topography information for 24 of the world's deserts.The Desert Biome - This is a good general desert site.Living Desert Zoo and Gardens - The Living Desert occupies 1,800 acres of the Colorado Desert, 300 of which are developed as a zoo, botanical garden and natural history museum. This site features detailed fact sheets about desert animals.
71Desert Links-2Sonoran Desert Kids - Designed for kids, this site features animal fact sheets, games, and a glossary.Desert USA - This site includes numerous online maps and information about animals, plants, geology, and the peoples and cultures of the American deserts. Sahara - This site includes geography, climate, wildlife, people, and history information and is enhanced by numerous video clips, music clips, and slideshows.