Lava flows are the remains of hot lava (molten rock) that erupts from a volcano and flows over the land.
When a volcano erupts, the lava is intensely hot, with red fire flames and hot flowing streams of lava. The lava burns everything it touches – trees, shrubs, bushes, plants, and the soil. The lava flow can spread for kilometres. When the lava flow cools, the molten rock is black, and it leaves the area black for hundreds of years.
For example, the Shetani Lava Flow in Kenya, Africa, is 8 kilometres (5 miles) long, 1.6 kilometres (1 mile) wide, and 5 metres (16.5 feet) deep – it is the remains of a volcanic eruption 200-500 years ago.
The area of the lava flow stays black with limited or no trees or vegetation, so people think that there are no animals living there. However, lava flows are inhabited by animals such as the rock hyrax, birds, mountain lions, kangaroo rats, squirrels, rabbits, badgers, deers, lizards, snakes, bats, frogs, toads, and insects – in fact, many animals, depending on the country and location of the lava flow.
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM