Lake Skadar Size report

Lake Skadar (also known as Lake Shkodra) is the largest freshwater lake in the Balkan Peninsula and the boundary between Albania and Montenegro. It was a seaside lagoon, originally a bay in the Adriatic Sea, and later deepened by slight subsidence of the earth's crust.

Lake Skadar is recharged by river water and a small amount of groundwater. In winter, the water volume increases, and the lake surface can expand by one-third. The lake flows into the Adriatic Sea via the Buena River and is navigable.

Lake Skadar has the region's most important bird habitat and migration area. The entire reserve will protect freshwater resources and terrestrial and delta systems of extraordinary value and beauty. This post will introduce more interesting facts about Lake Skadar.

Lake Skadar Introduction

Named after the town of Shkoder in northern Albania, Lake Skadar straddles the Montenegro-Albania border, located a quick drive from Podgorica and Budva on the Adriatic Sea coast. On the Montenegrin side, an area of 400 sq km has been protected by a national park since 1983; then, the Albanian government has announced that Lake Skadar and the surrounding area of nearly 495 square km will be protected as well. Lake Skadar is renowned as one of Europe's top bird habitats.

There are steep mountains to the west and northwest of the lake and plains and marshes to the east. Six rivers feed into the lake, of which the Moraca River is the largest supply. It is a blissfully pretty area encompassing steep mountains, island monasteries, clear waters, and floating meadows of water lilies.

Lake Skadar Size

  • As the largest lake in Balkan Peninsula and Southern Europe, the lake's water levels fluctuate considerably over the year. However, its surface area varies between 370 square kilometers (140 square miles) and 530 square kilometers (200 square miles).
  • The water level in the lake varies with season, reaching a maximum level of 9.8 meters during the wet season but does not go below 4.7 meters. The lake stretches 530 square kilometers when the water level is at its highest.
  • The lake extends from northwest to southeast, with a maximum length of 44 kilometers and a width of 14 kilometers.
  • It has a shoreline of 207 kilometers and can contain up to 1.9 cubic kilometers of water. The lake drains an area of approximately 5,490 square kilometers.

Biodiversity

Lake Skadar is a cross-border protected area between Albania and Montenegro with about 900 square km and has formed an important natural ecosystem. About 281 birds live in extensive wetlands, accounting for 87% of the bird population found in Albania; about 25,000 birds spend the winter here every year, and the place has gradually developed into a wild bird viewing spot. Lake Skadar is also home to 45 species of fish, and the surrounding area is home to many mammals, such as bears. The dry mountains are perfect biotopes for wild tortoises, vibrantly colored lizards, and some snakes.

The transboundary conservation of the largest freshwater body of water in the Mediterranean Basin, Lake Skadar, marks the success of transboundary conservation efforts by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and its international partners in the Balkans.

Final Words

Lake Skadar is home to several threatened animal species; it is entirely protected as a national park in Montenegro and a nature reserve in Albania. Lake Skadar is famous for its rich natural resources and magnificent scenery. It was listed as a national park by the Montenegrin government in 1993 and was included in the world's "List of Wetlands of International Importance" by the "Ramsar Convention" in 1996. At the end of 2011, it was officially nominated as a UNESCO heritage site.


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