Lake Poyang

Location map
China
label=Lake Poyang
lat=29
long=115.5
position=right
width=300
float=right
background=#FFFFDD
caption=Lake Poyang on the map of China
Infobox_lake |lake_name = Lake Poyang
image_lake =
caption_lake =
image_bathymetry =
caption_bathymetry =
coords = coord|29|00|N|115|30|E|type:waterbody_region:CN|display=inline,title
type =
inflow = 5 Rivers, primarily the Gan and Xiu
outflow =
catchment = 162,225 km²
basin_countries = China
length = 170 km
width = 17 km
area = 4400 km² (rainy season)
1000 km² (dry season)
depth = 8.4 m
max-depth = 25.1 m
volume = 2.95 km³
residence_time = 5,000 years
shore =
elevation = 12 m
islands =
cities =

Lake Poyang (zh-cp|c=鄱阳湖|p=Póyáng Hú), located in Jiangxi Province is the largest freshwater lake in China [http://english.people.com.cn/200202/21/eng20020221_90777.shtml "People's Daily Online" "Spring Fishing Ban on China's Largest Freshwater Lake"] .

It has a surface area of 3,585 km² and a volume of 25 km³. Its average depth is 8 meters. The lake provides habitat for a half million migratory birds [http://www.globalnature.org/docs/02_vorlage.asp?id=15793&sp=E&m1=11089&m2=11093&m3=11178&m4=15621&m5=15793&m6=&domid=1011 Global Nature Fund: "Detailed Data Lake Poyang-hu"] , and is a favorite destination for birding. It is fed by the Gan and Xiu rivers, which connect to the Yangtse through a channel.

During the winter, the lake becomes the home of large numbers of migrating Siberian cranes, up to 90% of which winter over there.

Environmental issues

There has been a fishing ban in place since 2002.

In 2007 fears were expressed that China's finless porpoise, known locally as the jiangzhu or "river pig", a native of the lake, might follow the baiji, the Yangtze river dolphin, into extinction.

Calls have been made for action to be taken to save the porpoise, of which there are about 1,400 left living, with between 700 and 900 in the Yangtze, with about another 500 in Poyang and Dongting Lakes.

2007 population levels are less than half the 1997 levels, and the population is dropping at a rate of 7.3 per cent per year.

Sand dredging has become a mainstay of local economic development in the last few years, and is an important source of revenue in the region that borders Poyang Lake. But at the same time, high-density dredging projects have been the principal cause of the death of the local wildlife population.

Dredging makes the waters of the lake muddier, and the porpoises cannot see as far as they once could, and have to rely on their highly-developed sonar systems to avoid obstacles and look for food. Large ships enter and leave the lake at the rate of two a minute and such a high density of shipping means the porpoises have difficulty hearing their food, and also cannot swim freely from one bank to the other. [http://www.chinadialogue.net/article/show/single/en/839-Poyang-Lake-saving-the-finless-porpoise "www.chinadialogue.net - Poyang Lake saving the finless porpoise]

In history

In 1363, the Battle of Lake Poyang took place there, and it is claimed to be the largest naval battle in history.

References

External links

* [http://www.chinadialogue.net/article/show/single/en/839-Poyang-Lake-saving-the-finless-porpoise Saving the finless porpoise]


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