Desert Biome: Abiotic Factors

There are lots of abiotic factors in the desert, some examples are sand, lack of moisture and temperature.

  • Sand
    • The soil of a desert is mainly comprised of vast sections of sand spanning over miles of land. The sand is dry and not mineral rich, enabling very little plant life to thrive on its foundation. Sometimes in cold deserts, moss and grass will join sand to make up the land and create very mineral-rich soil.
  • Lack of Soil Moisture
    • Precipitation of deserts vary. Depending on if the desert is dry, semiarid, coastal, or cold, the amount of rainfall is different. Hot and dry deserts yield usually only yield less than 10 inches or rain per year. Cold deserts may not receive much more, but it could be in the occasional form of snow as opposed to rain.
  • Temperature
    • Hot/ dry deserts are located very near to the equator and have a very warm temperature range: 20-25° C, with an extreme of about 45 degrees Celsius. Cold deserts, like in the Antarctic and Central Asia, are different from hot deserts in that their temperatures drop down much more in winter. Cold deserts' temperatures range from from -2 to 4° C in winter and in the summer 21 to 26° C.

Why are deserts so warm?

During the day in a desert such as the Sahara, a lot of sunlight heats the ground, which then heats the air. At night , that heat escapes into space, which makes the temperature in the desert drop very low. In areas that are not deserts , clouds prevent some sunlight from reaching the ground.

- “Desert Biotic and Abiotic Factors.” Accessed January 29, 2016.
- “How Climate Change Is Affecting the Desert Landscape.” Last modified June 16, 2014. Accessed February 9, 2016.