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» WILD DESERT ANIMALS | 10 Examples and characteristics

The animals that live in the desert are brilliant and perceptible examples of survival and adaptation. They are endowed with qualities and skills that help them survive and adapt to the extreme conditions of this habitat.

If you are interested in these wild animals, in this article we will see 10 examples, what characteristics they have, we will talk about their habitat, their types of food and reproduction. Read on and learn more about the beautiful and dangerous world of these fascinating species.

10 examples of wild desert animals


The coyote is a very close relative of the wolf. They are solitary animals, but in winter they gather in herds to hunt better.



Also called a zamur, the vulture is an animal that plays a fundamental role in the ecosystem by disposing of dead animal waste.


The desert iguana is a fascinating animal. It has a third eye or parietal organ that helps it with thermoregulation.


The great desert survivors. Camels have two humps that are very functional for storing fat, which provides them with energy in the absence of food and water.

Red-necked ostrich

The red-collared ostrich lives up to its name by its red-collared neck. It is the giant bird on the planet, although it cannot fly.


The addax is a crepuscular animal. They prefer to move around and look for food at dawn or dusk. They are amiable animals.


Being a desert animal, the oryx, in order not to lose liquid, can recycle its urine.

Horned Snake

The horn serpent uses its sand-coloured skin to camouflage itself and surprises its prey, injecting them with a potent poison.


This small animal has a demanding social structure, and they are very dominant. The Meerkats is a very familiar and attentive animal of his.


The yellow scorpion reproduces asexually in a process called parthenogenesis.

Characteristics of wild desert animals

These animals have different characteristics that make them adapt very well to extreme temperature conditions. Some have a whitish coat, which helps them reflect the sun’s rays, so they are not so affected by it.

Some others in their eyes and ears are covered with hair and eyelashes. This is very functional, as sandstorms always occur in the desert, so having this protects those sensitive parts.

A characteristic of some of these animals is their flat legs, perfect for agility and speed in sandy areas. By having this shape, they expand and avoid sinking.

The excellent quality and the most outstanding of the wild animals of the desert is an extraordinary capacity of thermoregulation; that is to say, to regulate its corporal temperature to avoid the excessive overheating and the loss of liquid in the body. Also, these animals can contain water in their circulation for many days, or obtain it through their food. And some others can recycle their urine using their kidneys.

Desert animals also have skin colours that are very useful for camouflage, either when hunting or hiding from predators.

What is their habitat like?

The desert is a habitat very easy to identify; we can see with the naked eye the arid and sandy soils, in addition to the high temperatures and few precipitations of water. You can feel the lack of vegetation, where only individual plants survive.

It is fascinating the data that in individual deserts at night the temperatures are opposite to the way it is in the day. The night becomes freezing, although this does not mean that it rains. Something characteristic is the sand that surrounds the top part of the ground, and it is a dry and very absorbent ground; the reason why the little water that falls will be consumed.

Despite being a seemingly inhospitable and lifeless place, this habitat harbours a large amount of biodiversity, which over time has adapted to the living conditions.

What is its diet?

As there is so much variety in this habitat that is the desert, there are different types of food. From carnivores, herbivores and insectivores. However, something exciting about how herbivores feed is that from there, many get the hydration they need to survive in the absence of water.

They consume leaves, plants, fruits and cactus, which conserve the water that falls from the rains. And these animals living in such an extreme climate and go days without trying a drop, with this method can hydrate for a few more days.

Forms of reproduction

The great variety of the desert wildlife brings with it different forms of reproduction, from viviparous animals such as oviparous. Some make a series of very striking courtships, in the way of dances. Others reproduce asexually, without fertilization, as we usually know it. In some herds, only a couple of individuals can mate and procreate. So much biodiversity has a lot of curious facts.

List of wild animals living in the desert

Next we will show you a list of the animals that live in the desert in wild state: