Write a short note on �Adaptations of desert plants and animals

7/8/2015 CBSE

of desert plants and animals:

(i) Adaptations
of desert plants:

Plants found in deserts are well adapted to cope with harsh desert conditions
such as water scarcity and scorching heat. Plants have an extensive root system
to tap underground water. They bear thick cuticles and sunken stomata on the
surface of their leaves to reduce transpiration. In Opuntia, the
leaves are entirely modified into spines and photosynthesis is carried out by
green stems. Desert plants have special pathways to synthesize food, called CAM
(C4 pathway).
It enables the stomata to remain closed during the day to reduce the loss of
water through transpiration.

(ii) Adaptations
of desert animals:

Animals found in deserts such as desert kangaroo rats, lizards, snakes, etc. are
well adapted to their habitat. The kangaroo rat found in the deserts of Arizona
never drinks water in its life. It has the ability to concentrate its urine to
conserve water. Desert lizards and snakes bask in the sun during early morning
and burrow themselves in the sand during afternoons to escape the heat of the
day. These adaptations occur in desert animals to prevent the loss of water.

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