The drop in water level in Lake Van poses a danger to fishermen

The drop in water level in Lake Van poses a danger to fishermen

Due to drought due to global climate change, Lake Van, which is the largest soda lake in the world and the largest lake in Turkey with an area of ​​3 thousand 712 square kilometers, continues to shrink. In the lake, which is also of great importance for diving tourism, the world’s largest microbialites come to light on different shores of the lake as the water recedes. Compared to previous years, the water level in Lake Van has decreased significantly due to the increase in evaporation due to the increase in temperature. This year, due to the lack of rainfall at the desired level in the spring and winter seasons, there has been a decrease in many lakes, dams, streams and water resources, especially in Lake Van. New microbialite (coral) areas that have formed over thousands of years have emerged on the Gevaş, Erciş and Muradiye coasts of Van, where the water has reached serious levels in shallow areas. With the withdrawal of water and the emergence of microbialites, it brought with it another problem. As the water level in the areas where fishermen cast their nets decreased in the past years, microbialites started to rise in this region and can damage both the nets and the boats. Experts on the subject warned fishermen to be more careful in coastal areas.


Stating that Lake Van constitutes the largest lake of our country with its area of ​​3 thousand 712 square kilometers, Van YYÜ Faculty of Fisheries Dr. Faculty Member Mustafa Akkuş said, “Lake Van is a special ecosystem with its extreme water quality. Because its pH is around 9.5, 9.7 and its salinity rate is 21 per thousand. Due to this special character of Lake Van, organasedimentary structures and microbialites are found on the bottom of the lake.” Microbialites in Lake Van are like tree-like structures and they rise to the surface like a tree. Almost like huge poles on the bottom of the lake. So far, microbialites on the bottom of Lake Van have at least 1-2 meters of distance between them and the water surface before the water level of the lake drops. There was a difference of meters. However, with the decrease in the lake water level, the microbialites, especially in the south and south-east parts of the lake, either moved to a distance of 50 centimeters to 30 centimeters from the surface, or completely rose to the surface. For this reason, the microbialites that fishermen had passed over with their boats in the past years are now very close to the surface. 3 -The microbialites that you passed over without any problems 5 years ago now pose a danger to fishermen. For this reason, boats navigating especially close to the shore in the southern and south-eastern parts of the lake need to be careful. Because where you used to go easily, now the top of a microbialite can be found right near the surface. Or, where you cast nets in the past and had no problems, your nets may now get stuck in microbialites. “This is a problem for microbialites that have formed over thousands of years, and it poses a problem for life safety and fisheries,” he said.


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