The Land   |  Deserts and the Sahel  |  A Continent in Crisis  |  Ethnic Rivalries
The Forest Dwellers  |  The Big Man  |  Nigeria   |  The Nations of Africa
Deserts and the Sahel

     Africa is home to three deserts: the Sahara, the The Sahara DesertKalahari, and the Namib; together they comprise more than a quarter of the continent. The Sahara is the largest desert in the world, covering part or all of eleven African countries. Sahara is derived from the Arabic word for desert. The Kalahari is a cold, rocky desert in southern Africa. The Namib, in southwest Africa, is one of the hottest, driest places on earth, with less precipitation than even the Sahara.

     The Sahel is the strip of land that separates savanna from the desert. Sahel comes from the Aradesertbic word for "edge" or "border" because it is the edge of the desert.

      The Sahel is shrinking at an alarming rate. Animals have been allowed to graze on its fragile land, which as destroyed the vegetation. The people who live along the Sahel have caused it to shrink by cutting trees and bushes for fuel. Without the trees and bushes to hold it in place, the thin topsoil is of the Sahel blown away, leaving stony land where neither grass nor crops can grow. The Sahara and the Kalahari Desert creep one hundred miles closer to one another every year as desertification and erosion spread.

Click here to discover more about the Namib desert.
I enjoyed this site so much I had to share it with you. It's part of a Reader's Digest series on natural history.

The Land   |  Deserts and the Sahel  |  A Continent in Crisis  |  Ethnic Rivalries
The Forest Dwellers  |  The Big Man  |  Nigeria   |  The Nations of Africa

To cite this page:
Dowling, Mike, "The Electronic Passport Homework to Deserts and the Sahel," available from http://www.mrdowling.com/611-sahel.html; Internet; updated Saturday, June 17, 2006 .

© 2007, Mike Dowling. All rights reserved.