Lake Rukwa

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Lake Rukwa

Lake Rukwa.png

Lake Rukwa, as seen from space.
Location southwestern Tanzania
Coordinates 8°00′S32°25′E / 8.000°S 32.417°E / -8.000; 32.417 Coordinates: 8°00′S32°25′E / 8.000°S 32.417°E / -8.000; 32.417
Type alkaline
Basin  countries Tanzania
Surface elevation 800 metres (2,600 ft)

Lake Rukwa is an endorheic lake in the Rukwa Valley of southwestern Tanzania. The alkaline Lake Rukwa lies midway between Lake Tanganyika and Lake Malawi at an elevation of about 800 metres (2,600 ft), in a parallel branch of the rift system. Almost half of the lake lies in Uwanda Game Reserve. [1]

Rukwa Valley

The Rukwa Valley is a valley of southwestern Tanzania, and is a part of the Great Rift Valley. Sparsely populated because of its harsh environment, its grassland biodiversity includes thousands of species.

Tanzania country in Africa

Tanzania officially the United Republic of Tanzania, is a country in eastern Africa within the African Great Lakes region. It borders Uganda to the north; Kenya to the northeast; Comoro Islands at the Indian Ocean to the east; Mozambique and Malawi to the south; Zambia to the southwest; and Rwanda, Burundi, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west. Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest mountain, is in north-eastern Tanzania.

Lake Tanganyika lake in Africa

Lake Tanganyika is an African Great Lake. It is the second oldest freshwater lake in the world, the second largest by volume, and the second deepest, in all cases after Lake Baikal in Siberia. It is the world's longest freshwater lake. The lake is divided among four countries – Tanzania, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Burundi, and Zambia, with Tanzania (46%) and DRC (40%) possessing the majority of the lake. The water flows into the Congo River system and ultimately into the Atlantic Ocean.

Contents

The lake has seen large fluctuations in its size over the years, due to varying inflow of streams. Currently it is about 180 kilometres (110 mi) long and averages about 32 kilometres (20 mi) wide, making it about 5,760 square kilometres (2,220 sq mi) in size. [2] In 1929 it was only about 48 kilometres (30 mi) long, but in 1939 it was about 128 kilometres (80 mi) long and 40 kilometres (25 mi) wide. [3] The lake may at times have been even higher and linked Lake Tanganyika with Lake Malawi; ancient shorelines suggest a final date of overflow into Tanganyika of 33,000BP. [4]

Helium discovery

In 2016, an estimated 1.53 billion cubic meters (54.2 billion standard cubic feet) volume of helium gas was discovered in Lake Rukwa worth $3.5 billion. [5]

See also

Related Research Articles

Geography of Tanzania

Tanzania comprises many lakes, national parks, and Africa's highest point, Mount Kilimanjaro. Northeast Tanzania is mountainous, while the central area is part of a large plateau covered in grasslands. The country also contains the southern portion of Lake Victoria on it's northern border with Uganda and Kenya.

Geography of Malawi

Malawi is a landlocked country in southeast Africa. It is wholly within the tropics; from about 9°30S at its northernmost point to about 17°S at the southernmost tip. The country occupies a thin strip of land between Zambia and Mozambique protruding southwards into Mozambique along the valley of the Shire River. In the north and north east it also shares a border with Tanzania. Malawi is connected by rail to the Mozambican ports of Nacala and Beira. It lies between latitudes 9° and 18°S, and longitudes 32° and 36°E.

Lake Malawi African Great Lake

Lake Malawi, also known as Lake Nyasa in Tanzania and Lago Niassa in Mozambique, is an African Great Lake and the southernmost lake in the East African Rift system, located between Malawi, Mozambique and Tanzania.

African Great Lakes series of lakes in the Rift Valley

The African Great Lakes are a series of lakes constituting the part of the Rift Valley lakes in and around the East African Rift. They include Lake Victoria, the third-largest fresh water lake in the world by area, Lake Tanganyika, the world's second-largest freshwater lake by volume and depth, and Lake Malawi, the world's eighth-largest fresh water lake by area. Collectively, they contain 31,000 km3 of water, which is more than either Lake Baikal or the North American Great Lakes. This total constitutes about 25% of the planet's unfrozen surface fresh water. The large rift lakes of Africa are the ancient home of great biodiversity, and 10% of the world's fish species live there.

Rift Valley lakes group of lakes in the East African Rift

The Rift Valley lakes are a series of lakes in the East African Rift valley that runs through eastern Africa from Ethiopia in the north to Malawi in the south, and includes the African Great Lakes in the south. These include some of the world's oldest lakes, deepest lakes, largest lakes by area, and largest lakes by volume. Many are freshwater ecoregions of great biodiversity, while others are alkaline "soda lakes" supporting highly specialised organisms.

Luangwa River river in Zambia

The Luangwa River is one of the major tributaries of the Zambezi River, and one of the four biggest rivers of Zambia. The river generally floods in the rainy season and then falls considerably in the dry season. It is one of the biggest unaltered rivers in Southern Africa and the 20,000 square miles that make up the surrounding valley are home to abundant wildlife.

Ruzizi River river

The Ruzizi is a river, 117 kilometres (73 mi) long, that flows from Lake Kivu to Lake Tanganyika in Central Africa, descending from about 1,500 metres (4,900 ft) to about 770 metres (2,530 ft) above sea level over its length. The steepest gradients occur over the first 40 kilometres (25 mi), where hydroelectric dams have been built. Further downstream, the Ruzizi Plain, the floor of the Western Rift Valley, has only gentle hills, and the river flows into Lake Tanganyika through a delta, with one or two small channels splitting off from the main channel.

Northern Province, Zambia Province in Zambia

Northern Province is one of Zambia's ten provinces. It covers approximately one sixth of Zambia in land area. The provincial capital is Kasama. The province is made up of 8 districts, namely Kasama, Chilubi, Kaputa, Luwingu, Mbala, Mporokoso, Mpulungu and Mungwi. Currently, only Kasama and Mbala have attained municipal council status, while the rest are still district councils. It is widely considered to be the heartland of the Bemba, one of the largest tribes in Zambia.

Kigoma Region Region in western, Tanzania

Kigoma Region is one of Tanzania's 31 administrative regions. The regional capital is the city of Kigoma. According to the 2012 national census, the region had a population of 2,127,930, which was higher than the pre-census projection of 1,971,332. For 2002-2012, the region's 2.4 percent average annual population growth rate was tied for the fourteenth highest in the country. It was also the sixteenth most densely populated region with 57 people per square kilometer. With a size of 45,066 square kilometres (17,400 sq mi), the region is slightly smaller than Estonia.

Nkasi District is one of the four districts of the Rukwa Region of Tanzania, with its headquarters in the village of Namanyere. It is bordered to the north by the Mpanda District of Katavi Region; to the east by the Sumbawanga Urban District; to the south by the Sumbawanga Rural District and Zambia; and to the west by Lake Tanganyika across from the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Albertine Rift

The Albertine Rift is the western branch of the East African Rift, covering parts of Uganda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania. It extends from the northern end of Lake Albert to the southern end of Lake Tanganyika. The geographical term includes the valley and the surrounding mountains.

Wildlife of Malawi

The wildlife of Malawi is composed of the flora and fauna of the country. Malawi is a landlocked country in southeastern Africa, with Lake Malawi taking up about a third of the country's area. It has around 187 species of mammal, some 648 species of birds have been recorded in the country and around 500 species of fish, many of them endemic, are found in its lakes and rivers. About 20% of the country has been set aside as national parks and game and forest reserves.

Malagarasi River river

The Malagarasi River is a river in western Tanzania, flowing through Kigoma Region, although one of its tributaries comes from southeastern Burundi. It is the second-longest river in Tanzania behind the Rufiji—Great Ruaha, and has the largest watershed of any river flowing into Lake Tanganyika. The Malagarasi-Muyovozi Wetlands are a designated a Ramsar site. Local tribes have nicknamed the Malagarasi as "the river of bad spirits".

Uwanda Game Reserve also known as Uwanda Rukwa Game Reserve is a reserve of the Rukwa Valley of southwestern Tanzania. It is an extension of Katavi National Park and covers an area of 4100 square kilometres. It includes almost half of Lake Rukwa.

Songwe Region Region in Tanzania

Songwe is a region of Tanzania created on 29 January 2016 from the western half of Mbeya Region. Its capital is Vwawa.

Geology of Tanzania

The geology of Tanzania began to form in the Precambrian, in the Archean and Proterozoic eons, in some cases more than 2.5 billion years ago. Igneous and metamorphic crystalline basement rock forms the Archean Tanzania Craton, which is surrounded by the Proterozoic Ubendian belt, Mozambique Belt and Karagwe-Ankole Belt. The region experienced downwarping of the crust during the Paleozoic and Mesozoic, as the massive Karoo Supergroup deposited. Within the past 100 million years, Tanzania has experienced marine sedimentary rock deposition along the coast and rift formation inland, which has produced large rift lakes. Tanzania has extensive, but poorly explored and exploited natural resources, including coal, gold, diamonds, graphite and clays.

References

  1. "Rukwa Uwanda Game Reserve". Utalii Travel and Safari. Retrieved 29 October 2010.
  2. Google Earth accessed 6 February 2007
  3. Encyclopædia Britannica Online/Lake Rukwa
  4. Lévêque, Christian (1997). Biodiversity Dynamics and Conservation: The Freshwater Fish of Tropical Africa. Cambridge University Press. p. 110.
  5. "Helium 'could earn Tanzania $3.5bn'". www.thecitizen.co.tz. July 8, 2016.