SOUTH AFRICA, AFRICA

Lake St. Lucia

Lake St. Lucia, with a size of 350 km², lies in the center of the 2.550 km² large protected area of the iSimangaliso Wetland Park. The former called “Greater St. Lucia Wetland Park” is the oldest protected area in Africa. Massive vegetated dunes surround the eastern shores and separate the lake from the sea.

What makes it special

Lake St. Lucia is the largest lake in South Africa.

Protection status

· Ramsar Site 345, Wetland of International Importance
· UNESCO World Heritage site
· Nature Reserve – St. Lucia Game Park
· Nature Reserve – St. Lucia Marine Reserve
· Nature Reserve – St. Lucia Park

11 invertido

Biodiversity

530 species of bird are recorded in Lake St. Lucia, among them White Stork, Fish Eagle, Bee Eater, Oriole and Curlew. The range of reptiles is equally diverse, with Leatherback Turtle, Nile Crocodile and the African Python. Hippopotamus are found in the Lake as well.

Threats

The lake’s level and salinity levels changes on an annual basis, varying with the rise and fall of the tides, as well as with the flux of the freshwater flowing in from the region is numerous rivers. In some years the lake’s salinity levels reach such high levels that many species of flora and fauna struggle to survive.