El Pinacate and Gran Desierto de Altar in Mexico has just become a biosphere reserve and are of great scientific interest. This 714,566 hectare reserve has two distinct parts: the dormant volcanic Pinacate Shield of lava flows in the east and the ever changing sand dunes (some of which reach heights of 200 metres) of Gran Altar Desert in the west.
The arid region harbours highly diverse plant and wildlife species including freshwater fish and the endemic Sonoran Pronghorn. There are ten deep and almost perfectly circular craters formed when the volcanic area was active contribute to the incredibly dramatic beauty.
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