Desert animals inhabit some of the driest biomes with intense sun rays, very little rainfall and living with the most dangerous animals. Temperatures throughout the day are the highest on the planet, reaching below zero at night until they boil in the middle of the day. Each year, only about 250 mm of rain falls.

Some land animals live in the desert


Types of deserts

There are two types of deserts, hot deserts found on both sides of the tropics, and semi-deserts found on continents, far from tropical regions. The main difference is that in a semi-desert it receives at least twice as much annual rainfall as a hot desert.

Desert animal adaptations

The animals that live in the desert have a very sacrificial life since they must endure high temperatures, days without water and food shortages. But that hasn't stopped life from emerging.

Although it is believed that there is very little life in them, most desert animals are nocturnal, coming out only at night when it is cooler and more bearable to live.

Survive without water

In the desert there is a great shortage of water and every drop counts. That is why some animals have developed adaptations to survive.

  • The roadrunner has a digestive system that extracts water from the feces before excretion.
  • The Dorcas gazelle survives without ever drinking water or urinating, obtaining it from its food and expelling only uric acid.
  • The desert lizard is able to absorb rainwater or wet sand through its skin.
  • The sand grouse has feathers that observe the water to carry them to their nest.
  • Camels' humps store fat, not water, to turn it into food and water.

Facing the desert

  • Some animals have an insulating layer to prevent heat from entering their body.
  • When the temperature is high, they begin to pant and sweat to cool down.
  • Some animals survive by digging large tunnels below the ground, where the sand is cooler.
  • The winding snake is able, through a rapid twisting movement, that only two small parts of its body touch the ground and thus avoid touching the hot sand excessively.
  • Sandfish are covered in tough membranes to protect themselves from sand.
  • The camel and jerboa can close their nostrils to prevent sand from entering.
  • The camel has eyelashes to clean the sand from its eyes.
  • The sand cat has developed claws that do not fully retract, allowing it to glide through the sand without burning its feet.
  • The mandrill escapes from its predators by hiding under rocks.
  • When the intense rays of the sun hit the furry ground squirrel it holds its bushy tail to create shade.
  • The “dark circles” of meerkats allow them to absorb sunlight and thus avoid being blinded by predators.
  • During times of drought, the African Pixie Frog burrows underground and covers itself with a mucous membrane where it can hibernate safely for up to seven years.
  • Birds extract nectar from cacti, while others use them for protection.

List of desert animals

picture of a herd of wildebeest


ñu (Connochaetes Taurinus) It is either of the two species of large African antelope of the Bovidae family. They are among the herbivores more specialized and successful Africans and dominate the lowland ecosystems. There are 2 species of wildebeest, which are the black wildebeest (Connochaetes gnou) and blue ñu (Connochaetes taurinus), both native to Africa.

Adult sheep


sheep (Ovis orientalis aries) They are medium-sized herbivorous mammals from Central Europe and Asia that graze on grass and eat berries. They are raised primarily for meat and wool, but also for milk (although the milking of sheep is much rarer than that of goat or cow).

An adult porcupine


porcupine (Erethizon Dorsaum), It is erroneously called the spinebody on great occasions, due to its similar name, but spinebody, as such, does not exist. Is a mammal They are small in size and have a rodent that is most active from dusk to dawn. They all have short, stocky legs, but their tails range from short to long, some of them being prehensile. The feathers, or spines, take various shapes depending on the species, but all are modified hairs embedded in the musculature of the skin.

Green grasshopper


grasshopper it is an insect belonging to the suborder Caelifera. This group is among the oldest living group of herbivorous chewing insects, existing since the early Triassic years, about 250 million years ago. They are known for their great jumping ability, incredible in height and distance.

Human being

human (Homo sapiens), we are all the people who live today and we belong to that species, the Homo sapiens species. We have evolved relatively recently, but with complex culture and technology we have been able to expand across the world and occupy a wide range of different environments.