Sonoran Desert habitat type: Rocky Slopes

Most mountainsides and hillsides are rocky slopes. Sides of arroyos and canyons could also be considered here. Such habitats are extremely well drained and prone to rapid runoff of rainfall. The relatively small amount of rain that doesn't run off percolates deeply into cracks and spaces between rocks. This deep moisture percolation is favorable for plants that have root systems capable of penetrating to large depths in cracks and crevices. Also, rocky slopes often remain above winter temperature inversions that form in valleys, providing a microclimate that usually escapes the extremely low nightime temperature that can occur in valley bottoms. This regime, together with the complex topographic nature of the habitat, results in a plant species diversity that is higher than other areas of the desert.

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Some species that could be found on Rocky Slopes.

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