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The Tanami Desert is a desert in the Northern Territory of Australia. It is rocky with small hills, an arid and isolated area that was not fully explored until well into the twentieth century. It is crossed by the Tanami Track. The explorer John McDouall Stuart made repeated attempts to cross the desert in the 1860's while trying to reach the Victoria River. He was unable to find water.
Under the name Tanami, it is one of the Interim Biogeographic Regionalisation for Australia (IBRA) regions. The desert is uniquely "one of the most important biological areas to be found in Australia particularly as it provides refuge for several of Australia's rare and endangered species." 
The species that are found include:
- Western Chestnut Mouse (Pseudomys nanus)
- Little Native Mouse (Pseudomys delicatulus)
- Long-tailed Planigale (Planigale ingrami)
Significant bird species include:
- Grey Falcon (Falco hypoleucos)
- Australian Painted Snipe (Rostratula australis)
- Freckled duck (Stictonetta naevosa)
- Environment Australia. Revision of the Interim Biogeographic Regionalisation for Australia (IBRA) and Development of Version 5.1 - Summary Report. Department of the Environment and Water Resources, Australian Government. Archived from the original on 2006-09-05. https://web.archive.org/web/20060905215218/http://www.deh.gov.au/parks/nrs/ibra/version5-1/summary-report/index.html. Retrieved 2007-01-31.
- IBRA Version 6.1 data
- page 79 of Gibson, D. F. (David F.) (1986) A biological survey of the Tanami Desert in the Northern Territory Alice Springs, N.T. : Conservation Commission of the Northern Territory, 1986. Techniacal report 072-9990 ; no. 30. ISBN 0724508368
- Kelly, Kieran, (2003) Tanami : on foot across Australia's desert heart Sydney : Pan Macmillan Australia, 2003. ISBN 0732911885
- Thackway, R and I D Cresswell (1995) An interim biogeographic regionalisation for Australia : a framework for setting priorities in the National Reserves System Cooperative Program Version 4.0 Canberra : Australian Nature Conservation Agency, Reserve Systems Unit, 1995. ISBN 0642213712
- http://www.nt.gov.au/nreta/environment/conservation/pdf/43_swtanami.pdf Archived 2011-03-20 at the Wayback Machine
- http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/publications/series/paper4/tan.html Australian government paper on environmental conditions.