China and the US don’t see eye to eye on many issues, but these two economy superpowers have something else in common besides wanting to be the world leader – Mother Nature has made it such that both nations have five great and beautiful lakes.
The five great lakes in China are not only great enriched sources of aquatic products, but these lakes have also played a huge role in great civilizations throughout China. The five largest/ great lakes in China include Tai, Dongting, Poyang, Chaohu, and Hongze lakes. Below, we take a brief look at these lakes.
Located in northern Jiangxi Province is Poyang Lake, the largest freshwater lake throughout China. Besides the size of the lake, which makes it an influential geographical feature in the nation, Poyang Lake plays a crucial ecological role in drought relief and flood control.
Poyang Lake feeds a number of rivers, including the Xiu River, Gan River, Fu River, Rao River, and Xin River, all rivers that flow into the Yangtze River through the gourd-shaped Poyang Lake. With these tributaries and distributaries, the area around the lake is largely influenced by these rivers and water systems, especially Gan and Xiu Rivers. During the dry season, for example, the original boundless waters of the lake will be divided into 9 lakes by shoals from Lake Poyang, creating spectacular grasslands.
Today, Poyang Lake reaches a maximum of 4,000KM2 during the rainy season, although it reached up to 6000KM2 during the Tang Dynasty.
It is one of the crucial international marshes essential for the preservation of biodiversity. The lake is home to one of the largest populations of the White Crane. And behind this quiet water surface, you have Chinese Bermuda and the Devil Triangle.
Dongting represents the second-largest freshwater lakes in China. It is located in the North-Eastern Hunan province, also called the South of the Lake Province. Legend holds that Dongting (which means an abode for immortals and fairies) is home to a dragon, following the tales of the dragon king and his family.
Dongting Lake is fed by four main rivers to its south – the Zi, Xiang, Li, and Yuan rivers that connect to the Yangtze River up in the Northern part of the lake. Smaller rivers also flow into this lake, including the Miluo River known best for the Dragon Boat Festival, where the patriotic poet Qu Yuan’s body is commemorated.
Tai Lake is China’s third-largest freshwater lake, although some people regard it as the 2nd largest lake because there has been a significant reduction in Dongting Lake. Tai Lake is fed by Jing and Shao Creeks, and there are at least 70 rivers that flow into the Yangtze River, where the Huangpu River located in Shangai is a major watercourse. Tai Lake’s entire water system features at least 180 small and big lakes, and the lake forms a spiderweb throughout all its watercourses. Its main stream is the Jiangnan Canal, part of the Jinghong Grand Canal.
Located in the northern part of Jiangsu Province is Hongze Lake, which though not as popular as Tai Lake, still is one of the largest lakes in China and is one of the 5 great lakes in China. Hongze Lake connects Yangtze and Huaihe Rivers, where it flows towards the Yellow Sea. This lake is an important lake for farmers and agriculture throughout the region.
The 5th largest lake in China is Chaohu Lake, which is located at the heart of Anhui Province. It features a bird-nest-like profile, which is what the lake is known for, and like the other lakes, it is part of the Yangtze River water system. The area around Chaohu Lake is proven perfect for the production of rice. The lake is 820KM2, and water from the lake flows from Chao county to the Yangtze River through the Yuxi River.
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