SpacerSpacerSpacer
Shadow
my I Dream Africa
  Register
     Why Register? Forgot my password
I Dream Africa provides a comprehensive directory of activities, hot spots, top locations etc. in Namibia. Combined with the directory, I Dream Africa also provides tour packages allowing clients to experience Namibia at its best.
Namib Desert
Sig shot
4x4 Guided Self Drive
Namibia is a perfect starting po...
4x4 Guided Self Drive
4x4 Self Drive
Namibia is a perfect starting po...
4x4 Self Drive
4x4 Self Drive - Namibian Deserts
Namibia's deserts offer the ...
4x4 Self Drive - Namibian Deserts
Namibia Wild Fishing Challenge
One on one in an epic battle bet...
Namibia Wild Fishing Challenge

Shadow
Shadow
Shadow
Spacer Spacer
Spacer Spacer

Namib Desert

Font Size Increase Font Size Decrease Print Page Send to Friend Add to Favorites

Nicknamed the world’s oldest desert, the Namib stretches along the coast of Namibia to form one of the most spectacular and richest deserts in the world. Gently sloping toward the Atlantic Ocean, it is patterned by a sea of giant red sand dunes, some that reach 1000 feet (305 m) high. Stretching 1,200 miles in length, but averaging a width of only 70 miles, the Namib Desert is home to the highest sand dunes in the world. Because of its long, stable climate over time, a number of species boast ancient origins. Others have evolved unusual adaptations to survive in the extremely harsh environment.

Although annual rainfall is limited to only .2 to 3 inches (5 to 76 mm) per year, thick fog from the Atlantic often blankets the dunes to create enough moisture for many species to survive. A tenebrionid beetle adopts a head-down position to allow condensing fog to trickle down into its mouth. Another beetle, Lepidochora discoidalis, is known to build trenches to trap fog. Even the black-backed jackal has been observed licking condensed fog off of stones. Plants have also adapted unusual features to help trap water and minimize loss. Although not typical, one of the most famous inhabitants of the Namib Desert is the welwitschia plant, which Charles Darwin described as the "platypus of the plant kingdom." With two wide undulating leaves, some believe that the plant absorbs water from fog. Yet it is often found along riverbeds, where it absorbs water with long lateral roots.

The seemingly endless sea of sand, gravel plains, and riverbeds are home to an assortment of species specially adapted to this hot and dry environment. The shovel-snouted lizard "dances" on the hot dunes by lifting its feet on the sand, while the Peringuey’s adder traverses through the dunes with a sidewinding slither. Desert lizards are extremely well adapted so that they have the lowest water-loss rates of any desert organisms. One striking species is the web-footed gecko. With a translucent body and bloodshot eyes, this gecko holds itself high on the surface of the dunes, leaving leaf-like prints with its webfeet. Its predators include dancing white lady spiders, hunting spiders, and sidewinding adders. Mammals, however, have higher rates of water loss, and thus need to find other adaptations to combat the heat. Many desert rodents, such as Setzer’s hairy-footed gerbils and Grant’s golden moles, emerge at night when the air temperature cools. Along the shore of the Skeleton Coast, brown hyena and black-backed jackal have been seen foraging on fish and larger carcasses. Birds include the dune lark, Gray’s lark, and threatened lappet faced vulture. Among strips of low-lying shrubs, pencil plants and dollar plants trap sand between the dunes and the shore. Other plants, which occur along dry watercourses, include Welwitschia, camelthorn and mustard tree.

Although much of this eco region is protected, one of the main threats lies in current land use practices. Most of this region falls within the Sperrgebeit (Diamond Area 1) famous for its diamonds. While access is restricted to mining operations within the "forbidden territory," current prospecting practices do pose a threat to the conservation of biodiversity of this sensitive landscape.

Spacer
Add to Wish List
Add to Wish List
Spacer
Send Enquiry
Contact Us
Spacer
Send Enquiry
Share this page
Spacer  
   
Spacer  
Spacer Spacer Spacer Spacer Spacer

Random Namib Desert Images

Spacer
Dollar Bush Namib Desert Dead Tree Waterfall Weathered Buildings
Spacer
View images in Namib Desert Gallery
 
Spacer  
Spacer Spacer Spacer
People Who Looked at

People who looked at "Namib Desert" also looked at...

Expand People who looked at
 
Spacer  
Spacer Spacer Spacer
Where to Go

Where to Go in and around Solitaire

Expand Where to Go
 
Spacer  
Spacer Spacer Spacer
Where to Go

Where to Stay in and around Solitaire

Expand
 
Spacer  
Spacer Spacer Spacer
Where to Go

What to Do in and around Solitaire

Expand
 
Spacer  
You have 0 items in your wishlist. View all items in your wishlist
Enquire Now
News and Updates
In the Media
Newsletter
Recently Viewed
Top 10
Namibian Hightlights
Preparing for Namibia
Namibian Facts

Shadow
Shadow
Shadow
Spacer Spacer Spacer
   Designed and Developed by ProDG, maintained by iWits Web Development   Terms & Conditions | Disclaimer | Site Map   
Shadow