When you think of a desert, what do you imagine? Perhaps you imagine the saguaros of the Sonoran Desert in Arizona. Maybe you think of the camels and sand dunes found in the Sahara Desert in Africa. Both of these images are correct, but did you know that deserts can also be cold?
A desert is any place that gets less than 10 inches of moisture each year. Most deserts actually lose more moisture than they gain. Some deserts are really hot! The Sahara Desert can reach 122 degrees Fahrenheit. The Gobi desert in Asia is very cold. So is the desert in Antarctica. Both these places are deserts because they are very dry.
Deserts probably don’t seem like very fun places to live. Most deserts seem bare and desolate. But, over 1 billion people live in desert areas. Life is challenging in the desert. Both people and animals must adapt. Crops don’t grow well and water is scarce.
Fun Facts about Deserts for Kids
- Many animals that live in the desert are nocturnal. They hide out in burrows during the day and come out at night when it’s cooler.
- Deserts cover over 20.9 million square miles of the planet.
- Lots of plants and animals live in the desert. In fact, only rain forests have more kinds of life. Over 200 rattlesnakes can live in one square mile of the Sonoran desert.
- Desert plants have padded leaves that store water during drought.
- Saguaro: large cactus with limbs that look like arms
- Desolate: empty, bleak
- Scarce: in short supply
- Nocturnal: an animal that sleeps during the day and wakes at night
- Burrow: hole in the ground
Learn More All About Deserts of the World
Check out this fun video all about deserts:
A video documentary about deserts and semi deserts.
What is an oasis?
An oasis is a wet area in the desert where there is a river or pond. Both animals and people gather at these places.
Do hot deserts ever get cold?
The Sonoran desert can be very hot during the day and very cold at night. The temperature can drop up to 59 degrees from day to night.
What Are 5 Interesting Facts About The Desert
- Deserts are very dry places: Deserts are like the opposite of rainforests! They get very little rain, so they are usually very dry and dusty.
- Deserts can be very hot: Deserts can be like giant ovens! The sun beats down on them all day, and the sand and rocks can get super hot.
- Deserts are home to a variety of plants and animals: Even though it might seem like there’s nothing living in the desert, there are actually lots of plants and animals that have adapted to living in these harsh conditions.
- Some deserts have sand dunes: Sand dunes are like giant hills made of sand! They can be found in some deserts, and they can be really fun to climb.
- Deserts can be found all over the world: Deserts aren’t just in one place! They can be found in lots of different countries and on every continent except Antarctica.
What Is A Desert For Kids
A desert is a type of landscape that is characterized by very little rainfall and a lack of vegetation. Deserts are found in many different parts of the world, and they can vary widely in terms of their size, temperature, and the types of plants and animals that live there.
Some common characteristics of deserts include:
- Very little rainfall: Deserts are dry places that receive very little rainfall, often less than 25 centimeters per year.
- High temperatures: Deserts can be very hot, especially during the day when the sun is shining. At night, the temperature can drop dramatically.
- Lack of vegetation: Because of the lack of water, there is often not much plant life in deserts. However, some desert plants have adapted to these harsh conditions and are able to survive with very little water.
- Unique animals: Many animals that live in the desert have adapted to the dry conditions and are able to survive without much water. These animals might include camels, snakes, lizards, and rodents.
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