Level of China's largest freshwater lake at record low

09:17, April 26, 2011      

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The water level of China's largest freshwater lake, Poyang Lake, has dropped to the lowest point in its history for the same period, local authorities said on Monday.

Located on the southern bank of the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River, Poyang Lake in southeast China's Jiangxi province is home to 140 kinds of fish and some 600 other animals.

Workers at Xingzi Station, the lake's main water station, recorded the water level at 9.48 meters at 8 a.m. on Monday, which was 4.1 meters lower than at any point in its history , said a spokesman with the Poyang Hydrology Bureau.

Zhang Limin, director general of the local fishing bureau, attributed the reason for the drop in the water level to the lingering drought confronting Jiangxi Province.

The province has received an average rainfall of 257 millimeters from January 1 to April 24, which is 54 percent lower than the average for the same period in previous years.

Zhang Limin said that the low water level might threaten the reproduction of wild fish and the growth of the aquatic plants in the lake.

Currently, many fish species are in their spawning season and need to lay eggs in the shallow-water marsh. When the water level is too low, the fish cannot find enough places to lay eggs, Zhang explained.

Source: Xinhua
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