The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

Categories: Nature

A small lake with a depth of less than three meters, located in the north of Tanzania near the border with Kenya, got its name from the mineral natron. Depending on the season, the surface of the Natron may be covered with a crust of mineral salts brought along with volcanic ash from the East African Rift Valley, also known as the Great Rift Valley.

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

Looking at this photo, it's hard to believe that at times this lake looks quite normal.

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

But when the evaporation of water leads to a significant increase in the alkalinity of Natron, some types of bacteria are activated, the vital activity of which colors the lake in a blood-red color.

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

Only a few species of animals live in the lake, including a unique species of fish called "alkaline tilapia". In addition, there are rare small flamingos, for which this is one of the few breeding places.

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

The waters of the lake reliably protect flamingos from predators during the mating season, so millions of these birds come here to nest, but this is still quite a dangerous event — flamingos build their nests on islands of salt that surround the deadly waters of the lake.

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

The alkalinity of the lake ranges from 9-10. 5 pH, and the water temperature reaches 60 °C, so animals (mainly birds), getting into the lake, immediately die, and their remains are covered with minerals and harden, turning into stone sculptures.

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

For the first time, the unique "ability" of Natron to kill animals and turn them into statues was discovered by photographer Nick Brandt during his next trip to Africa. He made a report by arranging the remains as if these birds and bats were alive, which made his shots look like scenes from a horror movie.

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

"I couldn't help but take a picture of them," he says.

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

The natural phenomenon of Lake Natron

Keywords: Nature | Tanzania | Lake | Phenomenon

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