Animals and Plants
Like the landscape, Morocco’s flora and fauna are divided by the Atlas Mountains. The north-west is influenced by the Mediterranean and so typical plants and trees of this region grow here. These include the half grass, juniper or dwarf palms.
Desert plants such as tufted grasses and thorn bushes grow in the dry southeast. Acacias occur occasionally. Date palms are grown in oases.
It looks different again in the mountains in between. Aleppo pines, for example, grow in the western, more rainy areas. Atlas cedars and Atlas cypresses are even named after their occurrence in the Atlas Mountains. Cork and holm oaks are also found. Many argan trees can be found in the southwest of the country up to a height of 1300 meters. They are endemic here. Argan oil is obtained from its fruits. By the way, goats love the leaves of the argan tree and climb up to their crowns. Below is a picture of it.
Above 3100 meters only cushion plants can be found.
Which animals live in Morocco?
In Morocco, where it is hot and dry, lives the caracal, a small big cat that resembles the lynx in appearance. Jackals, hyenas, desert foxes and gazelles are common, as are Barbary macaques. In Morocco, however, the leopard and the Berber lion were exterminated. On the other hand, reptiles such as lizards, snakes and turtles are numerous. The desert monitor is one of them.
The bird world in Morocco is particularly diverse. More than 450 species have already been counted. About half of them breed in Morocco. There are also many migratory birds that spend the winter here. You can often see storks. Eagles, vultures, buzzards, flamingos and ibises also fly through Morocco.
Of course there are also farm animals. Camels, donkeys and horses are traditionally used as a means of transport. Sheep, goats, cattle and chickens are also kept.
Although Morocco is one of the economically strongest countries in Africa, there are numerous problems. One percent of the population lives below the poverty line and has less than $ 1.90 a day to spend. Seven percent have less than $ 3.20 a day. Ten percent of Moroccans are unemployed. The foreign debt is high. Handicrafts are often carried out traditionally. This is how carpets or leather goods, copper or silver work are created. Morocco’s economy is based on agriculture, phosphate mining, fishing and tourism. When it comes to exports, clothing accounts for a large part.
40 percent of the population work in agriculture, which, however, only generates 14 percent of the total economic output. Barley, wheat, citrus fruits, grapes and olives are grown. Often the fields need to be watered. Cattle breeding is also practiced. Mainly sheep, cattle, goats and chickens are kept.
Phosphate is Morocco’s most important mineral resource. The world’s largest phosphate deposits are in Morocco and Western Sahara. Morocco is the largest export of your phosphate. An industry developed around the mining industry that processes the phosphate obtained in fertilizer and chemical factories. The mining takes place in the interior of the country, the processing mainly in the city of Safi.
Another important area of the economy is tourism. Around twelve million visitors come to Morocco every year. Marrakech, Casablanca, Agadir, Tangier and Fez are the cities that are most visited. Most of the tourists come from Europe and especially from France and Spain.
How do people live in Morocco?
Can you imagine life in Morocco? If you lived there, you would likely eat couscous and drink mint tea often. It would be warm most of the time, unless you live in the Atlas Mountains. In winter it can also get cooler on the coast. For more articles on Morocco and Africa, please visit historyaah.
Many people wear western clothing, but you can also see men, women and children in traditional garments such as the djellabas. Some women wear a headscarf or a veil, others don’t.
For shopping, Moroccans go to the market district, the souk, or in one of the small shops that are everywhere in the cities. There are more and more large supermarkets on the outskirts of the city centers. Payment is made in dirhams.
The typical Moroccan home of a little more affluent people is a riad. It has an inner courtyard or an internal garden. Often there is a fountain here. Most of the time the riad has two floors, but it can be higher. Through the inner courtyard the house is directed inwards. There are also few large windows to the outside. Less wealthy Moroccans live in smaller stone houses. They are mostly flat and often painted light blue or white.
Religion also determines everyday life. You can’t buy pork like that because Muslims don’t eat it. In the cities you can see many mosques with their high minarets. During the fasting month of Ramadan, Muslims are only allowed to eat after sunset. Friday is a normal working day in Morocco, but Friday is a holy day and at noon the muezzin calls for community prayer in the mosque.
On Fridays, alms are also given to those in need. Unfortunately there are a few of these. One percent of the population is considered very poor.