Water evaporates, flamingos die in Tuz Lake
AKSARAY - Anadolu Agency
In this season, 50 flamingos have died in Tuz Lake and it increases every other day, according to officials. Water evaporated up to 270 meters within 12 days. AA PhotoAs water evaporated up to 270 meters within 12 days, the number of dead flamingos in Lake Tuz, which is home to the largest flamingo colony in Mediterranean countries, has reached 50.
Nature Association General Director Engin Yılmaz said the number of hatching flamingos was 22,000 in 2013 and dropped to 2,650 in 2014.
He said flamingos hatched according to the water levels in the lake, adding, “As a result of that, all aboveground water resources to the lake were cut by dams and underground water was cut by wells, the water level decreased in the lake and the number of hatching flamingos fell by nearly 90 percent in a year.”
Yılmaz said they were closely following the area, where flamingo chicks gathered.
“Flamingo chicks gather in the place where the water level was high in the lake. This is the place where chicks learn how to fly and practice before leaving for hotter countries. This year, they began to die in these areas.
Between July 1 and 12, water evaporation reached 270 meters. This is disaster for flamingos; they are under great danger. Most of the adult flamingos left the area,” he said.
Yılmaz said there was a fast increase in flamingo deaths in the lake, adding, “Their death is parallel with water levels. In this season, 50 flamingos have died and it increases every other day.” He said they were trying to find a solution to save the flamingos’ lives in the lake before it turns into a flamingo cemetery.
Located at the heart of central Anatolia, the ecosystem of “Lake Tuz,” which also provides 60 percent of the country’s needs in salt, is already endangered due to the mass exploitation of its natural resources.
The lack of rain this winter coupled with the prospective establishment of new companies may split the lake into two.