are used to describe desert features. Find out about things like desert varnish,
plutons, or fanglomerates.
- a physical or behavioral characteristic that makes a plant or animal well
suited to its environment.
- a mixture of salts found in desert soils.
- fan-shaped mounds of gravel, silt, rock, and sand deposited by water
running down mountain slopes.
- rock or sediment through which groundwater moves easily.
- several alluvial fans that have joined together.
- the plants and animals living interdependently with a particular
- Spanish word for swamp; mire or bog caused by a seeping spring.
- a visible body of fine droplets of water. May exist up to several miles
above Earth's surface.
- the process by which water changes from a vapor state to a liquid or solid
state. (Water vapor in clouds condenses to form rain.)
- a dry, barren, often sandy region that because of environmental extremes
can naturally support little or no vegetation.
- a layer of stones on the desert floor that have been jammed together.
- a dark shiny coat on desert rocks, composed mainly of iron and manganese
due to weathering of the rocks.
- a sweet food served as the last course of a meal.
- a long, narrow, cross-cutting mass of igneous or sedimentary rock intruded
into a fissure in older rock.
- a whirlwind of dust or debris caused by rising convection currents of air. They may be blinding at times and appear like mini-tornadoes traveling across the desert.
- the interaction of the biological community (living things) and the physical
environment (water, air, minerals).
- a plant or animal in danger of becoming extinct throughout all,
or a significant portion of, its range.
- to spend the summer in a dormant state, like hibernating. This is an adaptation
of many desert animals.
- the process by which water changes into a vapor.
- not native; a plant or animal introduced into a biological community.
- the material in an alluvial fan that has been naturally cemented together.
- a narrow crack or cleft, as in a rock face.
- water stored beneath the surface of the ground, resulting from precipitation
and surface water that has percolated down. Water that supplies wells and
- the home of a plant or animal that provides food, water, shelter, and space
in a suitable arrangement.
- a pillar of rock left by erosion.
- formed by solidification from a molten or partially molten state.
- a figure or design incised beneath the surface of hard metal or stone.
- prominent steep-sided residual hills and mountains rising abruptly from
- an optical phenomenon that creates the illusion of water, often with inverted
reflections of distant objects, and results from distortion of light by alternate
layers of hot and cool air.
- a plant or animal that evolved or was transported to an area by natural
- a fertile or green spot in a desert due to the presence of water.
- the study of the physical geography of mountains and mountain ranges.
- Native American designs on rock made by incising, carving, or pecking.
- Native American images on rock painted with fingers or a brush.
- a dry lake. Occurs when lake water evaporates over time and leaves behind
minerals, often in the form of a white frosting.
- a large body of magma (molten rock from deep in the earth) that has cooled
and hardened. Some have been uplifted to be exposed on the surface, much like
the rock formations at Joshua Tree National Park.
- water from clouds in the form of rain, hail, sleet, or snow.
- located along a stream, river, or other body of water.
- an area of sunken land in which water collects without a natural outlet,
often forming a salt lake.
- a natural flow of groundwater reaching the surface.
- manmade dams in natural drainages to catch runoff for use as water troughs.
- an accumulation of rock debris, usually at the base of a cliff.
- a species present in its range but in danger because of a decline
- the process by which plants evaporate moisture through the surfaces of their
- a vent in the earth's crust through which molten lava and gases are
- the bed of an intermittent stream.
- a group of minerals that contain water.