Can you imagine a vast barren land that would stretch for more than thousand miles? This piece of land is so dry that the flora and fauna surviving in these conditions can be counted on fingers. Even the predators of humans had problems surviving in this area.
It may sound fictional but this place is for real and is known as the Arabian Desert. This area has been wrongly popular for the millennia because of the hard climatic and unforgivable climatic conditions.
Arabian desert’s geography
One of the largest desert that is nearly around 900000 square miles is the Arabian Desert. The location of the desert is evident from the name that is the Arabian Peninsula. It covers a huge portion of Peninsula. People consider it as impenetrable due to its vast stretch.
Countries like Saudi Arabia, Yemen(both on southwest) and Oman(on east) share not only the borders of the desert but also the political and geographical advantages. Other neighbors are Kuwait, Iraq, Egypt, and Jordan. The Arabian desert benefits from these countries also and vice-versa is also true.
As many presume from the name that the desert contains only vast expanse of sand but the physical features of Arabian desert not only includes sand but also has mountains (along the border). These ranges define the beginning and ending of the area. Mount Al-Nabi Shu’ayb(elevated around 12400 feet), Mount Al-Sham(elevated around10000 feet) are the highest point and second highest point of the area respectively.
The largest city in the world which is covered with sand is the Rub’al-Khali. This can only be seen when magnified in the map. Gigantic sand dunes cover most of its terrain, but some middle areas are formed of minerals. Nearly 2000 years ago this area was considered to be the place of lakes.
Weather conditions of the Arabian Desert
The Arabian desert is unfit for human living. This is because of the severe fluctuations in temperature during day and night. It is as high as 40-46 degree Celsius during daytime to cold at nights. Though it is hot round the year during winters it becomes totally unsuitable for living beings. The Arabian desert also witnesses a little rainfall which supports the vegetation.
Flora and fauna of the Arabian Desert
The vegetation that flourishes in this extreme temperature includes date palms, mustard, and Daisy. Their roots are designed as per the climate and the amount of water available that is thin and proliferated so that they can absorb more water and prevent itself from wilting in the brief periods of rain. Among fauna camel(found in abundance), locusts, spiders, and vipers are among the few survivors as the other mammals like gazelles and ibex have begun to disappear. The main reason of their decreasing number is poaching. Camel is the only animal that is guarded and looked after by a tribe of nomads known as Bedouins.
People and Cultures of the Arabian Desert
Though Arabian desert is not suitable for humans yet Bedouins are the regular inhabitants of that area. Another name of Bedouins is ‘the desert dwellers’ or the desert people. To earn their living, they breed camels. Performing agriculture on fertile lands is the second most popular occupation amongst them. These people live off the land.This tribe lives in groups as per patriarchal hierarchy lead by only one leader who is known as Sheikh. Visitors are treated like a family. The special treatment includes free meals and stays in Bedouin’s tent for three days.
Earlier this tribe had seen many issues rising amongst them over grounds for grazing cattle, land for agriculture and lots more but gradually things have changed. With the experience of elders and energy and new ways of thinking of youngsters, there have been significant modifications to their lifestyles. With the passage of time this area has seen development of means of transportation which has provided Bedouins with an opportunity of better education, movement to various places, better access to many new and old resources and exchange of culture. This has lead to development and civilization of the Bedouins.