Photographer's Note

The western Negev sands are a unique ecosystem, inhabited by a large diversity of organisms, many of which are endemic and/or rare. It is considered as the second most valuable ecological system in Israel. In recent years, however, the most important and crucial habitat -- the shifting-sand habitat -- is disappearing. This is due to an ongoing stabilization process caused by the development of biogenic soil crust, and lack of soil-crust breaking agents, such as large ungulates and herds. Furthermore, the disappearance of the shifting sand habitat also reduces the heterogeneous habitat mosaics of the sandy area, which is essential for conserving its biodiversity.

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Additional Photos by Assi Dvilanski (asival) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 293 W: 109 N: 750] (5307)
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