NEET UG » NEET UG Study Material » Biology » DESERT ECOSYSTEM


Interactions between creatures, the temperature in which they live, and any other non-living factors on the habitat characterise a desert ecosystem. Deserts are dry environments with generally mild temperatures; although, frigid deserts do exist.

Despite various pieces of research on life on other worlds, it has been determined that Earth is the only planet where live organisms can be found. Survival necessitates unique types of atmospheres, land formations, and ecosystems found only on Earth. Each continent on the earth has a desert and its own ecology, which is referred to as the desert ecosystem. The term desert refers to a mainly barren, dry, and abandoned area of land with no flora or fauna in the sand. It could be both cold and hot. The Desert is the world’s driest region, with only a trace of precipitation per year. Throughout the year, it receives less rainfall.

What is the Desert Ecosystem?

Earth is the only planet where living things are found, even though there has been a lot of research done about other planets and how life works. Survival is only possible on Earth because it has certain types of atmospheres, land formations, and ecosystems. Each continent on this planet has a desert, and each desert has its own ecology, which is better known as the desert ecosystem.

The word desert refers to a mostly barren, dry, and abandoned land that doesn’t have any plants or animals in the sand. Cold and hot could happen. The Desert is the driest place on the planet that doesn’t get much rain every year. It doesn’t get a lot of rain all year.

So, the desert ecosystem is the driest ecosystem on the planet, which means there is less diversity of life and little vegetation in it because it doesn’t get as much rain. There are animals and plants that can live in very bad weather in the Earth’s ecosystem. The desert environment does not have any precipitation or rain.

So, the desert ecosystem is a group of living and non-living things that live together and interact with each other in a desert. It’s the way that the Abiotic and Biotic Components of this environment work together. If you want to learn more about the desert ecosystem PDF, keep reading.

It is important to know what the desert ecosystem is made up of

Here are some things you should know about desert ecosystems:

  • It doesn’t get a lot of rain or snow.

Less rain is a desert feature and the reason why it is so dry. Deserts get seasonal rain that lasts for a short time (just around 25 to 30 centimetres).

  • Aridity

Aridity means there is not enough dry moisture. As it doesn’t get as much rain, it becomes drier.

  • The speed of the wind

Wind speed is very high in this ecosystem. That’s why deserts get dust storms or sandstorms that are more intense, which makes sand dunes.

  • Extremely hot weather

This type of ecosystem is very hot or very cold at night and day. The days are hot, but the nights are very cold.

  • Humidity

During the daytime, it has a low level of humidity. At night, it has a high level.

  • The population density

There aren’t a lot of people living in the deserts. Also, there isn’t enough food or water, so it’s not a good place to live.

  • Scarcity of water

As it doesn’t get a lot of rain, there isn’t enough water. This lack of water makes deserts go without water for more than six months!

  • Biodiversity

It’s hard to live in a desert ecosystem. But deserts have a lot of different animals and plants, even though they look like they don’t. They have learned how to adapt their survival skills so that they can live in deserts that are very harsh and extreme.

There are different qualities of the soil

Deserts are dry, sandy, and rocky. Thus, it doesn’t have a lot of vegetation. The soil is grey in colour because it doesn’t have any organic materials like phosphorus and nitrogen, which are important for plants.

Desert Ecosystem Types are shown.

Desert ecosystems can also be found in arid, tropical, and very cold places. List of types:

  1. Hot and dry

This ecosystem is made up of dry and hot weather, and it doesn’t get a lot of rain every year. In places where the soil is rough and harsh, there are big changes in the temperature. It’s best to look at the dry and hot desert ecosystems in South Asia, Central America, Africa, Australia, North America, and so on to see the best ones.


It’s the same as the one before that. In this ecosystem, there is a lot of stable ground, hard rocks, and a lot less sand dunes. The temperature isn’t very high. When it comes to deserts, the Great Basin is the best example of one. This area gets a lot of rain.

  1. The Coastal area:

It’s found on the coasts of large bodies of water, like seas and oceans, and it’s moved by the waves of the ocean. Besides having winter fogs, the climate is friendly. Some places in Africa and Chile have deserts that are close to the coast.

4) The cold desert ecosystem 

It has a lot of rain in the winter and less in the summer. It has cold winters and a lot of snowfall, short summers, and a moderately wet and hot climate. A lot of snow dunes cover the ecosystem. It’s best to look at cold desert ecosystems in Antarctica, the Nearctic region, and Greenland to see how they work.

Desert Ecosystems have a lot of jobs.

Deserts happen to be a big part of our planet. And no matter how dry or harsh this ecosystem is, it still has a job to do. There is a lot that desert ecosystems do for the whole world, so each of the things in the bullet point is important.

  • It is home to a lot of different kinds of animals and plants. These animals and plants have changed, and they can live in very difficult places.
  • When it’s not being used, CO2 is stored there. That means the bacteria in sands help to keep CO2 or carbon dioxide from getting into the air by putting it in the sand.
  • Natural gas, oil, and minerals can be found all over the world.
  • In the desert, the ecosystem helps to make salt.
  • It’s a great place to keep Mother Nature’s old things safe. So, deserts play a huge role in archaeological discoveries.
  • They have different landscapes and oases. People are drawn to its natural beauty because of how it looks. Thus, deserts have become a favourite place for tourists to visit.
  • CO2 is stored in desert sands. This is what scientists found: Bacteria that live in the Kalahari Desert in Africa help store carbon dioxide and CO2.


In this way, you’ve learned about the types of desert ecosystems, how they work, and some examples of them in a short way.


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What kinds of ecosystems can be found in the desert?

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