Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Most deserts have rich biodiversity

Many people think that deserts are areas supporting very little life, with only few species, and how there is practically nothing except sand and sun. This is because lots of animals that have their habitats here remain hidden during hot daylight hours because of temperature and moisture. Evolution planned for life to grow in all areas, including the deserts and there are many thousands of animal and plant species capable to survive in these extreme conditions. These plants and animals are mostly endemic since it took them many thousands of years to develop ability to survive in these harsh conditions. This is what makes deserts so important when we focus on our planet's biodiversity.

Deserts have many unique ecosystems

Unique climate conditions require unique abilities to adapt to them, and so many cacti species are specialized to store and conserve water in this area of extreme water scarcity, many mammals for instance evolved during many thousands of years large appendages that increase surface are, dispersing heat more rapidly for easier adaptation. All species, whether animal or plant species, had to pass this long evolution process to adapt, and this makes desert biodiversity so special. The rougher the conditions the more it took for these species to adapt, and each one of them has some unique ability that allowed them survival. Nature played rough on them, but evolution helped them to overcome these extreme conditions. But can these species also overcome human influence on planet?

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