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Chamarel or Coloured earths this natural phenomenon is due to decomposed basalt gullies. The hot and humid climates helps in the decomposition of the basalt into clay. As a result of total hydrolysis (chemical breakdown of minerals by water), the soluble elements such as silicic acid and cations are washed, leaving a large composition of iron and aluminium which constitute a ferralitic soil. The iron sesquioxydes have a red and anthracite colour, whereas the aluminium sesquioxydes have a blue or purplish colour

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