Before the Journey – Knowing Desert Climates and Animals



Summary: A walk into the desert is an experience you will most definitely cherish throughout your life. However, one should always be well acquainted with the extreme climatic situations and the wildlife prevalent there.


Deserts do not receive rainfall at short intervals. However, when the rain does fall, the desert experiences great abundance. Animals and plans found in the desert region have adapted themselves to these extreme conditions. They are equipped to handle these short spells of abundance. Desert landscapes are much more diverse than you might expect. Some deserts like the Sahara lie on ancient crystalline rocks that have hardened for millions of years. Some deserts are folded products formed due to recent tectonic movements. Rocky Mountains and low sedimentary plains are characteristics of these deserts. Such deserts are common in North America and Central Asia.


Desert Climate

The climate is not the same in all kinds of deserts. There are hot desert climates, cold desert climates, and mild desert climates. Whatever the climate is, you must take adequate steps combat all kinds of harsh desert climatic conditions once you are in the desert. Hot desert climates feature exceptionally hot spells of heat throughout the year. The temperatures can easily rise over 45 degrees Celsius. Night temperatures might go below freezing point due to excess loss of heat from radiation; though this is uncommon. We aren’t discussing cold and mild desert climates here.


Desert Animals

Large mammals and birds escape the intense dry spells by migrating up into the mountains. Smaller animals that can’t migrate regulate their environment and body temperatures. They seek out shady places for survival. Rodents, snakes, and invertebrates avoid the heat during the day by staying behind rocks and inside burrows and caves. They hunt for food at night. Animals that are active in the day reduce activity and take rest in shades during the hottest hours.  The type of animals you will come across is dependent on which desert you are treading. Take precaution to keep animals and insects away during your stay.


Dung beetles, sand cats, spiny anteaters, antelopes, greater roadrunner, sidewinders are all spread across various deserts around the world. There are certain animals you should always beware of. They are the rattlesnakes, scorpions, Gila Monster, Mountain Lion, killer bees, centipedes, wild boars, and bears. Not all rattlesnakes are deadly but the Green Mojave rattlesnake is always deadly. Scorpions of North America can be deadly. Always check your shoes before putting them on. That’s their favorite resting place. If you are out in the desert with your family, make sure you have taken all precautionary steps so that no danger befalls you.