Flamingos dominate African deadly lake

Natran Lake, Tanzania, is not exactly the nicest place for fauna: most animals that decide to take a dip in its waters turn into statues calcified by the high level of alkalinity there. However, it has become a kind of refuge for flamingos in Africa.

These beautiful animals were drawn to this inhospitable place by the belly: their main diet is based on cyanobacteria such as spirulina, which usually grow in places with high alkalinity. With the lack of predators, flamingos thrived in this place, so much so that it became migratory route of these birds.

The islands that form this lake are also perfect for flamingos to set up their nests without worrying that the young will be devoured. The long paws allow these birds to walk in the caustic waters of Lake Natran without suffering the negative effects they have on other animals.

To complete the picture, the waters of the lake naturally have a reddish color, as the cyanobacteria present there are rich in carotenoid. This has resulted in the presence of more than 2.5 million flamingos, almost 75% of the entire world population of the species.

3 out of 4 flamingos in the world are born on Lake Natron

Human threat

This spectacle of nature, unfortunately, is threatened by the human presence. The development of our breed has interfered with lake conditions, so much so that the number of flamingos born in the Natran has declined dramatically, igniting the red alert in institutions fighting for the preservation of animals.

The main reason for this imbalance is human withdrawal of sodium carbonate from this lake, which affects the level and quality of water for flamingos. Tanzania has just over 32% of its territory within protected reserves, but this does not encompass Lake Natran because it is considered a wetland of international importance.

Because of this, sodium carbonate extraction companies have tried to build large plants in this lake, but fortunately these projects have been blocked. This does not prevent humans from destroying territory in other ways, but it is a bit of a relief to both flamingos and nature itself.

Natron Lake Waters Perfect for Flamingos