Terrain shapes and bedrock
Geological structures and relief features in Tunisia have a direction in the northeast – southwest. This means that the drainage is directed to the northeast and that the long coastline is irregular, especially in the north. To the northeast lies the Gulf of Tunis with the long Cape Bon Peninsula on its eastern side, further south to Hammamat Bay and Lilla Syrten, the latter with the Qirqina Islands and the island of Jarba.
The northern part of Tunisia consists of the mountain country of Dorsale, which mainly consists of foothills from the Atlas Mountains. The highest peak, Jabal Shambi (Jabal ash-Shanabi) at 1,554 m above sea level, is close to the border with Algeria. Between the Dorsale and the coastal mountains in the north, Kroumirie, the river system al-Majrada (Medjerda) is spreading with, among other things. the tributary of the Mellègue.
South of the mountainous area of northern Tunisia, a steep plain of 200-500 m spreads. Further south there is a lake area with shallow salt lakes (chott), i.e. the great Shatt al-Jarid (Chott Djerid).
The southernmost part of Tunisia is occupied in the west by the Sahara masses (Great Eastern Sand Desert). The eastern part is occupied by the Dahar Plateau, which continues into Libya. In Matmata in the northern part there are rock deposits with carved, half-cylinder-shaped caves, which give the residents protection from heat and dust storms. A wide coastal plain spreads southeast of Gabès.
According to COUNTRYAAH, Tunisia has a warm temperate climate of the Mediterranean type, which turns south into steep and desert climate. The rainfall falls during the winter, which is mild. Summer is dry and hot. The average temperature for January is 11 °C and for August 27 °C.
The rainfall varies greatly: in the north, 800 mm per year falls, in the south 100–400 mm. Northwest winds prevail, but the proximity to the Sahara causes sciroccon to blow at times, especially in the south.
Nearest to the Mediterranean, Tunisia is largely cultivated and culturally influenced and exhibits a long line of striking but introduced plant species, such as agave and figonopuntia. However, the flora in the coastal area is very rich in species that are widely distributed in North Africa and southern Europe, including many orchids as well as pea plants, wreath plants, wicker plants and amaryllis plants. The tree and shrub vegetation includes, for example, olives, elephant numbers, kermesek, dwarf palm, Phoenician one (Juniʹperus phoeniʹcea) and mastic.
In the interior of Tunisia, open vegetation with low bushes, herbs and grasses is spreading. Dehydrated salt lakes also exist in their quarters, which have a flora of salt-resistant plants, mainly amaranth plants such as Arthrocneʹmum, Anaʹbasis and Halocneʹmum strobilaʹceum.
Several species that now exist only in sub-Saharan Africa have disappeared from Tunisia in historical times. African elephant, lion and ostrich. Leopards are rarely found in mountainous areas. There are close to 80 species of mammals, of which desert rats are a distinct feature.
Predators include golden shawls, genets and perennials, as well as in desert foxes (Vuʹlpes rueppeʹllii), fennel, desert cat (Feʹlis margariʹta) and caracal. In the mountain forests in the north there are wild boar and berry crown deer, in semi-deserts and deserts in the south cuvier gas and sand gazelle (Gazeʹlla leptoʹceros). There are also North African elephant beak mice (Elephaʹntulus rozeʹti) and camphor rats.
It breeds about 170 species of birds, including several species of stone washes and larch and some species of fly hens. In the salt lakes inland, flamingos nest, and on the coasts many European migratory birds rest or winter. Egyptian cobra, horned snake, lizard snake, common chameleon and several species of French finger lizards can be mentioned. scorpions and scorpions.
In 2010, there were six national parks. The largest are the bird-rich freshwater lake Ichkeul in the north and Jabal Bu Hadma in central Tunisia.