Difference between desert and steppe.

At first glance, deserts and steppes are very similar - monotonous, "dimensionless" landscapes, in which there are no trees. But if you dig a little deeper, it becomes clear that deserts and steppes are different, like "heaven and earth."


Desert - it is a natural area characterized by a minimal amount of flora and specific fauna.

Steppe is a natural zone, a natural-territorial complex, which is distinguished by the predominance of grass vegetation and a corresponding "set" of animals.


Firstly, both natural zones have different geographic locations. Basically, deserts are confined to the tropical belt of Africa (Sahara), Australia, Eurasia. But there are also those that are located in the subtropical and temperate climatic zones - Eurasia, North and South America, as well as coastal deserts, which are located along the western coasts of the continents of the Southern group.

Sahara Desert

The steppes stretched out in wide strips on the plains of Eurasia, South and North America within the temperate and subtropical climatic zones.

Climate is one of the main factors shaping the natural area. The largest deserts - African, Australian and Asian - form at high summer temperatures (above 33 ° C) and winter temperatures of 12 ° C. Deserts are formed under conditions of minimal moisture - up to 200 mm of annual precipitation.

Steppes are formed at average summer temperatures equal to 24 ° C, with winter temperatures equal to -10 ° C, in conditions of insufficient moisture - 250-450 mm of annual atmospheric precipitation.

Due to the peculiarities of the climate, the surface of the desert can be sandy, rocky, clayey or saline - the soil in the desert does not form. But the steppes are covered with a layer of soil characterized by a high level of fertility.

The flora of the desert is mainly composed of leafless shrubs, succulents and xerophytes that can withstand prolonged drought (eg, cacti, milkweed). Mostly sclerophytes live in the steppe: feather grass, fescue, fine-legged and other grasses.

Steppe of Kazakhstan

Small rodents, many species of reptiles, a number of insects and arachnids have adapted to life in the desert. The steppe is dominated by ungulates, small rodents, birds, reptiles and insects.

Due to the high quality of the soil, most of the steppes on Earth today are plowed up and have become ideal lands for plant growing. On the territory of the desert, you can engage in nomadic animal husbandry, and with intensive moisture, you can grow rice, vegetables and cotton.

Conclusions TheDifference.ru

  1. Both zones have different geographic locations: most deserts are confined to the tropics, steppes are subtropical and temperate climatic zones.
  2. The climate in which deserts are formed is more extreme. It is hotter here, and there is less precipitation.
  3. In the desert, soils are not formed, in the steppe there are soils, and they are very fertile.
  4. Both zones have a different plant and animal set.
  5. The steppes are actively involved in crop production. Only small areas of this natural zone have been preserved in a pristine state. Only now and only very small areas of the desert are the developed Arab countries beginning to include in irrigation agriculture.