Ecosystems - Mojave Desert Essay

3928 Words Aug 25th, 2013 16 Pages
Question: What management strategies have been implemented in response to the resilience and vulnerability of a selected ecosystem? The Mojave Desert is a world famous desert that occupies a significant amount of California and smaller parts in surrounding states. Covering thousands of square kilometers, the ecosystems can range from 100 meters below sea level up to 2000 meters above sea level. The biophysical interactions within these ecosystems such as earth movements, soil formation, weather and climate lead to very diverse environments, along with the many biotic factors. With the rapidly increasing impacts of human uses, pollution and urban sprawl the Mojave Desert is consistently becoming more damaged, altered and different to what …show more content…
The Mojave Desert is generally 1,000 to 2,000 metres above sea level, but other places can be far lower or higher in elevation. The elevation at Charleston Peak is 3,634 metres above sea level and Bad-water is Death Valley is 86 metres below. Due to these large differences in elevation, there is a great variation in temperatures and rainfall across the region, in all seasons. The region has large salt flats in the centre which are surrounded by rocky, dry mountains and canyons, plains of sand and gravel, and long slopes. New slopes are still being made by storms as the biome is consistently changing. Wind and rain push rocks out of the canyons and deposit on top of them a layer of gravel, little rocks and clay. This top layer is named desert pavement and slowly over time, cacti and creosote bush grow in it. The Colorado River and the Mojave River (underground) runs through the east of the desert, being the most important water source available. Due to the deserts elevations it is considered as a 'High Desert'. It is a transitional desert between the hot Sonoran Desert to the south, and the cold Great Basin Desert to the north. The climate of this desert has extreme variations of daily temperatures, strong seasonal winds and clear skies. In January (Winter) temperatures can get as low as 13 degrees Celsius contrasting with August (Summer) where they can reach 50+ degrees. Night temperatures can get rather low,

Related Documents