Taihu Lake Size report

Located on the southern edge of the Yangtze River Delta, Taihu Lake is one of China's five largest freshwater lakes and the third-largest in terms of area. Located between 30°55'40"~31°32'58" north latitude and 119°52'32"~120°36'10" east longitude, in the south of Jiangsu Province, Jiangsu Province has administrative jurisdiction over the whole of Taihu Lake.

Taihu Lake is located in the subtropical zone with a mild and humid climate. The Taihu River port is vertical and horizontal, with many estuaries, and there are more than 50 main inflow and outflow rivers. There are more than 50 islands in Taihu Lake, of which 18 islands are inhabited.

In the 1960s and 1970s, the lake surface area decreased by 13.6% due to the development of planting and aquaculture. More than 160 small lakes disappeared, with a total area of 161 square kilometers. In recent decades, many departments such as the local government and the Ministry of Natural Resources have issued policies and measures for comprehensively managing the water environment in the Taihu Lake Basin.

Size And Description of Taihu Lake

The Taihu Lake lies on a flat plain and is connected by a maze of waterways that feed it from the west and discharge its waters eastward into the East China Sea via the Wusong, Liu, Huangpu, and other rivers. In addition to these natural waterways, there is an intricate pattern of canals and irrigation channels associated with the lake. The lake is 68 kilometers long and has a maximum width of 56 kilometers. Due to sediment deposition and artificial reclamation, some islands have joined the shoreline to form a peninsula. There are still 48 large and small islands.

The surrounding area has been settled since the 1st century BC, but the irrigation system mostly dates from the 7th century AD and later. Reclamation and drainage improvements were conducted intensively between the 10th and 13th centuries; large-scale flood control measures were undertaken in the 11th and again in the 15th century. Similar improvements have been carried out in more recent times: drainage canals and dikes have been built, and an ever more complex irrigation pattern has emerged.

Taihu Lake Size

Taihu Lake has a surface area of 2,427.8 square kilometers, a catchment area of 2,338 square kilometers, and a total length of 393.2 kilometers of shoreline. The average annual runoff of the lake is 7.5 billion cubic meters, and the water storage capacity is 4.4 billion cubic meters.

FeaturesSize
surface area2,427.8 square kilometers
catchment area2,338 square kilometers
shore length393.2 kilometers
average annual runoff7.5 billion cubic meters
water volume4.4 billion cubic meters

Hydrological features

Flow: The average annual runoff of Taihu Lake is 7.5 billion cubic meters, and the water storage capacity is 4.4 billion cubic meters.

Water level: The average water depth is 2 m (6.6 ft), and the water storage capacity is 4.43 billion cubic meters. The spring rain increases in April every year, and the water level rises. The water level is the highest in July and August; the dry season is in November and December, and the water level is the lowest in January and February of the following year.

Water temperature: The annual average water temperature of Taihu Lake is 17.1°C, the average water temperature in January is 4°C, and the average water temperature in July is 25°C. Thin ice 1-2 cm thick can only be seen in the bay or the leeward shore of the lake all year round. The entire lake freezes only in extremely cold years. In the past 65 years, the entire lake has been frozen only 10 times.

water pollution

Since the beginning of the 21st century, improper treatment of chemicals and sewage has led to the deterioration of the water quality of Taihu Lake, the nutrient level of Taihu Lake has increased. In recent years, blue-green algae have often grown in summer, seriously threatening the drinking water quality of nearby residents. At the end of May 2007, a large-scale outbreak of blue-green algae in Taihu Lake caused serious pollution of the water source, causing a water supply crisis for nearly 2 million residents. Subsequently, the Chinese government stepped up efforts to control water pollution in Taihu Lake, and the Taihu Lake Basin was protected by grades and divided into three-tier protected areas.

Final Words

Taihu Lake has historically been considered a place of great natural beauty, particularly in the east near Suzhou and in the north around Wuxi (both in Jiangsu), the pictured-scenery attracts countless tourists from all over the world. Some of the islands in the eastern part of the lake are traditionally famous Daoist and Buddhist religious sites, and several thousand people live on them, raising fruit and fishing in the lake. Taihu Lake is rich in fine pearls, plump crabs, and various freshwater fish. Spend a few days in the Taihu area and you will surely learn about the unique traditional Chinese folklore and culture.


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