In seasons of drought they are hardly more than swamps and mud flats, which for a time may become a grassy plain, or desolate coast encrusted with salt.
Deep, which baffled every effort to reach the interior until in 1813, when a summer of severe drought had made it of vital importance to find new pastures, three of the colonists, Messrs Blaxland, Lawson and Wentworth, more fortunate than their predecessors in exploration, after crossing the Nepean river at Emu Plains and ascending the Dividing Range, were able to reach a position enabling them to obtain a view of the grassy valley of the Fish river, which lies on the farther side of the Dividing Range.
Another matter which deserves attention was the great drought which culminated in the year 1902.
Here at early morning on the 21st of December the emperor offers sacrifice on an open altar to Shang-ti, and at periods of drought or famine presents prayers for relief to the same supreme deity.
The island lacks water, and is dusty during drought, but is fertile, producing fruit, wine and olive oil; the indigenous flora comprises Boo species.
The extreme rigour of the climate of Tibet, which combines great cold with great drought, makes the country essentially very poor, and the chief portion of it little better than desert.
The drought is severe; rain falls rarely and in small quantities.
The walking or climbing fishes, which are peculiar to south-eastern Asia and Africa, are organized so as to be able to breathe when out of the water, and they are thus fitted to exist under conditions which would be fatal to other fishes, being suited to live in the regions of periodical drought and rain in which they are found.
A fact that was amply illustrated, moreover, is that the period of incidence of a drought is not less important than its duration, and the same is true of abnormal rainfall.
It is quite possible for a hot dry season to be associated with a large yield of corn, provided the drought is confined to a suitable period, as was the case in 1896 and still more so in 1898; the English wheat crops in those years were probably the biggest in yield per acre that had been harvested since 1868, which is always looked back upon as a remarkable year for wheat.
The drought of 1898 was interrupted by copious rains in June, and these falling on a warm soil led to a rapid growth of grass and, as measured by yield per acre, an exceedingly heavy crop of hay.
The highest and lowest annual totals for the United Kingdom in the period 8751905 were the following: After 1892 cattle, which in that year numbered 11,519,417, and sheep declined continuously for three years to the totals of 1895, the diminution being mainly the result of the memorable drought of 1893.
The value of the trade depends on regular rains, so that in seasons of drought the exports seriously diminish.
The district is exposed to drought and also to destructive floods.
Occasionally, the whole country suffers much from drought; but disastrous floods not unfrequently occur, particularly in the spring, when the beds of the rivers are inadequate to contain the increased volume of water caused by the rapid melting of the snows on the Carpathians.
In times of drought the Guanches drove their flocks to consecrated grounds, where the lambs were separated from their mothers in the belief that their plaintive bleatings would melt the heart of the Great Spirit.
If it allows of too free drainage drought sets in and the plants, not getting enough water for their needs, become stunted in size.
Heat and drought had continued for more than three weeks.