Africa is one of the grand wonders of nature. The whole continent is blessed with an abundance of flora and fauna, which naturally has that heated aura. Whenever you think of Africa, your mind automatically goes to deserts and jungles with ferocious predators like Lions and Cheetahs. Well, the real fact here is Africa is one of the developing continents with a lot of significance. The land is filled with much potential for development.
Africa is the second most populous continent on the whole planet. In addition, the African continent is also the second biggest continent with a lot of varying terrains. The land of Africa is filled with wild fascinations. Apart from its dense wildlife, the whole continent was the second fastest growing economy in the world.
Africa has a lot of wonders, to be precise. From well-civilized cities to the densest of forests. One such wonder of the African continent is Lake Chad. The surrounding region of Lake Chad and the lake itself has been a carrier of many facts and amazements for a very long period. In this article, let us look at some of the most popular facts about Lake Chad in Africa. Some of these facts about Lake Chad in Africa might really give a lot of insights into the location to the reader’s mind.
1) More about Lake Chad
Lake Chad is situated in the far west direction of the state of Chad and the far northeastern direction of the state of Nigeria. This iconic location has been providing water for about 30 Million and more residents of the nearby vessel countries surrounding lake Chad. These countries are the primary users of Lake Chad’s water.
Lake Chad is generally known as an Endorheic Lake. An Endorheic Lake is a water body that is covered with land. The water body has no escape route. The world has a lot of famous Endorheic lakes. Normal lakes tend to have an outflow from their normal region. It is the general reason for streams and running water. But here in lake chad, there is not even a single opening to let the water inside flow outside. It is an Endorheic Lake. These lakes are of the kind which losses water only through the heating temperature or, as we call it, evaporation.
Lake Chad is the alpha water body in the Sahel region, which is present in west-central Africa. It is also said that Lake Chad is the main reason for its neighboring country’s name, which is usually the other way around for other lakes and states.
2) Facts about Lake Chad in Africa
2.1) Chad is Located in a Portion of Africa that is Land-locked
The country of Chad, where the great Lake Chad resides, is completely covered by other prominent states of Central Africa. The State of Chad is covered by neighboring states such as Libya to the North, Sudan to the East, The Central African Republic to the South, Cameroon, and Nigeria to the Southwest. Land-locked status is one of the well-known facts about Lake Chad in Africa.
It is said that Chad houses some of the best zones available in the whole country. One such location is the Desert region of the Sahelian Belt as well as the Savanna zones.
Chad is one such state on the list of 16 other famous landlocked states in Africa. Lake Chad is one of the most important signature locations of the Chad state. About half of the country’s region is covered by the Sahara Desert, the world’s largest desert.
2.2) Lake Chad was once the Largest Lake to Ever Exist in the Whole of Africa
In 1960, Lake Chad was considered one of the country’s most important signature marks. Lake Chad was the largest lake to be ever present in Africa. It has been the primary water source for a lot of native Africans. The whole terrain near Lake Chad was once covered with lush green regions. The place was once famous for its fertility. The fertility level of the land makes up one of the interesting facts about Lake Chad in Africa.
But as time passed, Lake Chad’s water started to get dry. The water level in Lake Chad decreased gradually. This decrease in the water level of Lake Chad was not expected by most of the natives. The change in the water level was noticed on a global scale. The water in Lake Chad has no source of inflow, as well as outflow. This leaves this massive water land to just get dried up over time. Rainwater is the only thing that can fill up this magnificent space.
This attribute of Lake Chad makes its existence quite questionable shortly. It is because a reduced rainfall shortly won’t help Lake Chad to get filled up. Moreover, the rising temperatures will make the atmosphere hotter. This naturally facilitates the process of drying up. When more and more water is evaporated from Lake Chad, its size relatively becomes smaller and smaller. When this happens, The Lake Mega Chad won’t stay ‘Mega’ anymore. A lot of activists are working on stopping this from happening at the same time. They are working on the way to refill it.
2.3) The River War
The lake water in River Chad has been a source of livelihood for many humans and animals around the region. The early decades of the twenty-first century gave world-class attention to the shrinkage of Lake Chad. This specific shrinkage happening to Lake Chad was even named the River War by its supporters and activists.
Lake Chad, as said before, is one of the primary water resources for the natives of Chad present around. This particular situation is also known as the Lake had a crisis. A lot of animal species lost their habitats due to the shrinkage of Lake Chad. This Lake Chad crisis has been a major threat to many communities relying on it.
This word called The River War was put to use long before the nineteenth century by one of the prominent prime ministers of the United Kingdom known as Winston Churchill. He has also exposed a lot of worthy facts about Lake Chad in Africa. The current generation uses the River war to state the ecological issues faced by Lake Chad. But back then, there was a war that took place near the regions of Lake Chad. The war was known as Sudan’s conquest between 1896 and 1899, led by the Anglo-Indian Egyptian communities. This event was later written about and published by Sir. Winston Churchill.
2.4) Lake Chad’s Ownership was Quite Complicated
The Sahara desert proved to be one of the famous battlegrounds for the conflicts that took place for the land and power present in Africa. Lake Chad proved to be the prominent trade center present in Africa. A lot of precious materials brought from every nook and corner of the early world were traded between nations through the Chad Basin. In addition to this, the Chad Basin was also the house of a lot of animal species. The traders who passed through the Sahara Desert were often met with native scavengers who just wanted to loot the goodies they took in for trading.
But soon, this act became quite intolerable and paved the path to a lot of small-scale wars between the natives and traders. The Sahara Desert, the next closest signature landmass, was used as a battlefield for many community wars. A lot of Empires wanted to take control of the trade region, as well as Lake Chad. It is because Lake Chad was considered a power source with the caliber to provide water resources for many years, decades to be precise.
There was a lot of blood that spilt over the Sahara Desert due to the fight for ownership over the Lake chad basin. The whole region turned into a tense zone for a lot of people who just wanted to trade. It was because they were often met with people who were crucially looking for a fight to establish their dominance. They were also met by the petty scavengers who were mentioned before. But all these acts ended when an important idea came into existence. The idea of Islam is the second most followed religion in the current world.
2.5) Lake Chad was Influenced by Modern Politics
One of the unknown facts about Lake Chad in Africa is that the Lake Chad Basin was first involved in a lot of battles between empires that wanted its ownership. But soon after the fall of the empire ages, the modern age started to show its face gradually. Lake Chad was under an organized government. Their rule was kind of systematic and effective as well. The whole region of Chad didn’t have any trouble with its political side.
Soon after the fall of the Empires, The Europeans evaded the African lands and found their way to Central Africa. As said before, the area was considered the famous trade center of the African country. Europeans came to Africa just to get involved in the trade but ended up creating a whole colony of them. They made their presence visible in the neighboring peaceful countries as well.
The reign of the Europeans was also put to an end during the year 1960. The African government formed its very own republic. They appointed superiors to work for their well-being. Soon, the states around Lake Chad and its political representatives joined hands to bring up its status of it. Every single one of them was desperate to make Lake Chad’s status a lot better, both ecologically and socially.
Thus, the political representatives of the states Chad, Cameroon, Nigeria, and Niger came forward together to establish certain standards and measures for the people operating around the lake. Their primary aim was sustainable management. All of them worked on establishing provisions and rules to protect and develop Mega Chad. Even the local communities helped the newly established government to protect and up bring the well-being of Lake Chad.
2.6) Lake Chad Houses a Lot of Flora and Fauna
Lake Chad is generally rich in a lot of flora and fauna. The land around it is quite fertile, which supports a lot of lives. Lake Chad has certain regions which have wetland grasses, which generally house a variety of reptiles. The Lake is 1850 Kilometers long. So you must imagine the number of species sheltered by this magnificent lake.
The Lake Chad basin is quite diverse. From very big to the tiniest of them, Lake Chad is filled with a lot of fish species. Lake Chad receives little precipitation every year, which gradually reduces its size. But despite the reduction of its size, a significant number of Animal species are still being sheltered by Lake Chad. Nearly 45 species of Algae were discovered along the borders of Lake Chad. The southern basin area is filled with tons and tons of fish species.
Lake Chad is the fourth largest lake, housing a lot of species that could also be used as a food source for humans. Nearly 5 Million fish species are being caught by the natives from this lake every year. The population of the fish breed present in Lake Chad hasn’t faced any reductions in numbers yet. Even after being one of the popular food sources of Central Africa, the whole region is still being challenged with the main problem of food insecurity. This is one of the interesting facts about Lake Chad in Africa.
2.7) Lake Chad is a Popular Spot for Bird Migration
As said before, the Lake Chad basin provides a livelihood for a lot of fish species. This increased population of fish within the waters of Lake Chad has made it a popular place for birds to migrate from every portion of the world. Rare birds such as The Marbled Teal and The Glossy Ibis are found during certain seasons in Lake Chad. In addition to these, Lake Chad also welcomes other migratory birds like River Prinia, Garganey, Rusty Lark, Pintails, and lastly, the Crested Cranes.
One of the important facts about Lake Chad in Africa is that all these birds travel to Lake Chad during certain seasons to find food. Birds go in search of food either long before the start of summer or soon after the end of summer. Thus, Lake Chad becomes a famous migratory spot for birds during these seasons. Lake Chad turns into heaven for these bird species, especially during the dawn of the winter season.
The Chari river, one of the main sources of water for Lake Chad, never fails to flush the lake with rare fish species, some of which are the favorites of these birds. Certain fish types in Lake Chad lure these rare birds to the same spot, again and again, year after year.
2.8) A lot of Animals visit Lake Chad, Despite its Decreasing Water Level
One of the famous events associated with lake Chad was the publication of its satellite image, which was taken decades before. The satellite image shows significant improvement along the borders of Lake Chad. It has developed a lot of flora along the borders. But most of the Lake’s region has dried up to a massive extent.
The upper region found in the lake Chad photograph had the bluest shade in the satellite images taken in the past century. But the image taken currently shows the upper portion as nothing but just a plain mass covered with a lot of sand. The terrain has no signs of water. It is just filled with uneven dunes. This shows us that the upper portion of Lake Chad has completely dried up due to the rapid climate change. This climate change faced by Lake Chad has caused the Lake’s water to dry up even more than usual. The Satellite image stands as one of the proven facts about Lake Chad in Africa.
Lake Chad has been a victim of the Climate crisis for a lot of decades now. Most of the activists are trying to find a way to uplift the status of Lake Chad. Even after getting dried up, Lake Chad is still considered one of the famous visitation spots for its regular fauna like Gazelles, Hyenas, Hippos, Monkeys, Cheetahs, and Crocodiles. Certain Biodiversity conservation centers are set up in and around the regions of Lake Chad to take proper care of the animal visitors and to keep them coming.
2.9) Humans Were Also a Reason for the Lake’s Decreasing Water Levels
Apart from the natural causes such as climate change and decreased precipitation, humans and their actions have also contributed to the Lake’s s decreasing water level. Actions like overgrazing and deforestation are some of the primary causes which are indirectly associated with the case. In addition to this, poor human management has also contributed to this case.
Improper irrigation methods adopted by the natives by using the existing water of Lake Chad worsen the condition even more. Dams of poor quality add up to the decreasing water levels of Lake Chad. This certain crisis faced by the people and governments around Lake Chad Basin has been marked as one of the worst crises which could ever be faced by these developing countries of Africa, according to the United Nations. This is one of the facts about Lake Chad in Africa which associates with Human ignorance.
These are some of the interesting facts about Lake Chad in Africa, which summarize certain issues faced by it as well. Check out one of the related content, ” Quick facts about Africa and its surroundings,“ brought to you by Icytales.