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Deserts
(Click on the question number for the answer.)
 
Desert Distinctions
Not all deserts are hot, but all deserts share one particular characteristic. What four-letter adjective describes that characteristic?
 
World Deserts
Which is not a desert?
A. the Gobi
B. the Mojave
C. the Punjab
D. the Atacama
E. the Kalahari
 
Geology
Located in deserts and along sandy ocean coasts, the most significant deposits due to wind are called ...
 
Plant Seeds
During dry periods, the seeds of many desert plants lie ---- and then sprout when enough moisture is present.
A. mutant
B. dormant
C. adapted
D. hibernated
E. effervescent
 
Australia
What name do Australians use for their continent's parched interior?
 
Bored Weathermen
Where could generations of meteorologists watch a rain gauge and never have anything to report?
A. Gobi Desert
B. Mojave Desert
C. Atacama Desert
D. Painted Desert
E. Great Salt Lake Desert
 
Overlooks
Dante's View overlooks a region where summer temperatures reach 135 degrees F and less than 2 inches of rain falls annually. Name this hottest, driest, and lowest place in North America.
 
The Big One
The largest of the world's deserts is the ...
A. Mojave
B. Sahara
C. Nubian
D. Sonoran
E. Kalahari
 
Desert Divisions
There are five categories of deserts. Which one, typical of deserts at extreme latitudes, is missing from this list?
subtropical
coastal
rain shadow
interior
 
The Mideast
The most outstanding mineral resource of the Middle Eastern deserts is ...
A. oil
B. cobalt
C. uranium
D. nitrates
E. platinum
 
Animal Epithets
What animal is known as "the ship of the desert"?
 
Flowers
Which is not an example of a desert flower?
A. kudzu
B. yucca
C. saguaro
D. sagebrush
E. prickly pear
 
Extremes
Temperatures drop to -40 degrees F in the winter and rise to 115 degrees F in summer. Icy winds blow in winter, sandstorms howl in summer, and average annual rainfall is 6 inches. Name this desert that is spread across the Mongolian People's Republic and the People's Republic of China.
 
Biomes
One feature that characterizes both tundra and deserts is ...
A. midlatitude locations
B. the absence of mammals
C. relatively low precipitation
D. a short annual growing season
E. high average annual temperatures
 
Deserted Locations
On what continent are the Sechura, Patagonian, and Atacama deserts?
 
Desert Soil
The soil profile of a desert area typically has ...
A. high acidity
B. thick topsoil
C. high humus content
D. no evidence of horizons
E. a high content of soluble salts
 
Sunsets
Sometimes Florida sunsets are tinted yellow by dust carried aloft by windstorms over what African desert?
 
Desert Climates
Which continent has the fewest square miles of true desert climate?
A. Asia
B. Africa
C. Europe
D. Australia
E. South America
 
Streams
Streams that increase in volume as they flow downhill are called gaining streams. In deserts, streams often decrease in volume as they flow. These are called ...
 
Botany
Desert plants capable of holding considerable quantities of water are classified as ...
A. herbs
B. hybrids
C. succulents
D. perennials
E. hydrophytes
 
Arid Areas
Less than ten centimeters of precipitation annually falls on what continent?
 
Latitude
At approximately what latitudes are the major deserts of the world?
A. 20 degrees north and south
B. 30 degrees north and south
C. 40 degrees north and south
D. 50 degrees north and south
E. 80 degrees north and south
 
Plant Classifications
There are three broad classifications of plants based on their need for water. Plants which thrive in deserts fall into which of these three categories?
 
Oases
An oasis is a fertile area formed where wind has eroded the desert surface down to ...
A. loess
B. bedrock
C. the mantle
D. an anticline
E. the water table
 
Sand and Water
The Namib is a desert located adjacent to what body of water?
 
Desert Synonyms
Dry desert gullies called arroyos are also known as ...
A. wadis
B. buttes
C. bahadas
D. barchans
E. pediments
 
Illusions
An optical illusion often associated with arid plains or deserts is a ...
 
Consumers
Which creature is not a first level consumer in a desert biome?
A. ant
B. coyote
C. jackrabbit
D. kangaroo rat
E. big horn sheep
 
Ecology
In Africa, sand buries huge tracts of land every year. Whole villages are covered and thousands of people evacuate their homelands. What term describes this process by which arable land is replaced by arid wasteland?
 
Continents
The western half of which continent is primarily comprised of desert?
A. Asia
B. Africa
C. Australia
D. North America
E. South America
 
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Answers to Deserts
1. arid
2. C
3. (sand) dunes
4. B
5. outback
6. C
7. Death Valley
8. B
9. polar
10. A
11. camel
12. A
13. Gobi
14. C
15. South America
16. E
17. Sahara
18. C
19. losing streams
20. C
21. Antarctica
22. B
23. xerophyte
24. E
25. Atlantic Ocean
26. A
27. mirage
28. B
29. desertification
30. C
 
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