Within the framework of the SAMDENE (Systems Analysis of Mediterranean Desert Ecosystems in Northern Egypt) project, the influence of grazing on the vegetation upon two ecosystems characteristic for the western desert of Egypt was investigated. One study area is situated on calcareous sandy dunes 50 km west of Alexandria; another is located in a sandy inland depression. The vegetation was sampled according to the multiple plot method. The vegetation on the sandy dunes was also analysed using the Braun-Blanquet method. Data were processed by Principal Components Analysis. The Braun-Blanquet data were also analysed by a classification programme.