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It is an irregular quadrilateral in shape, and its shores, save on the west, are deeply indented. This article was most recently revised and updated by, https://www.britannica.com/place/Lake-Victoria, University of Texas, Dallas - Lake Victoria, UN-Water Activity Information System - Lake Victoria, Victoria, Lake - Children's Encyclopedia (Ages 8-11), Lake Victoria - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). The vegetated shores of Lake Victoria near the Speke Resort in Munyonyo, Kampala, Uganda. It is the largest tropical lake in the world. Its shores in particular are dotted with the key cities and towns, including Kisumu [pic. Lake Victoria is divided among three countries Kenya 6 %, Uganda 45%, and Tanzania 49%. Lake Victoria has more than 200 species of fish, of which the Tilapia is the most economically important. Many archipelagos are contained within the lake, as are numerous reefs, often just below the surface of the clear waters. Omissions? Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. Lake Victoria’s northern coast is flat. Lake Victoria receives 80% of its water from direct rainfall while the other 20% comes from small rivers flowing into the lake. Of the numerous islands in the lake, Ukerewe, north of Speke Gulf, is the largest, with wooded hills rising 650 feet (200 metres) above the lake. Before 1954, Lake Victoria’s ecology was characterised by enormous biodiversity. Save 50% off a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive content. Kiira and Nalubaale (Owen Falls) dams have been built on the Victoria Nile and the lake’s waters are used in the production of hydroelectricity. Surviving from the treasure of Chief Rumanika of…, In Central Africa, Lakes Victoria, Albert, Tanganyika, and Nyasa exhibit substantial long-term features, some of which are consistent, suggesting that a common climatological factor is responsible. Its coastline exceeds 2,000 miles (3,220 km). Most of the shoreline villages are Luo, where friendly and colorfully dressed tribespeople maintain a lively fishmonger industry. There are local steamer services around the lake. Since the 1900s, Lake Victoria ferries have been an important means of transport between Uganda, Tanzania and Kenya. The lake’s deeply indented northern coast is flat and bare. The lake’s basin area covers 184,000 square kilometers (71,000 square miles). It is about the size of Ireland. Lake Victoria is the world’s second largest fresh water lake by surface area, after Lake Superior in North America. approximately 530 square kilometers. Lake Victoria is divided among three countries Kenya 6 %, Uganda 45%, and Tanzania 49%. The lake’s only outlet is the Victoria Nile, which exits from the northern coast. Steep rocks up to 90 meters (300 feet) high back the southwestern coast, while the western shore is marked by swamps, papyrus, which make way for the delta of the Kagera River. The dam provides hydroelectric power on a large scale and made the lake a vast reservoir. The last time it dried out 17,300 years ago, and it refilled beginning about 14,700 years ago. Lake Victoria, also called Victoria Nyanza, largest lake in Africa and chief reservoir of the Nile, lying mainly in Tanzania and Uganda but bordering on Kenya. The main ports on the lake are Kisumu, Mwanza, Bukoba, Entebbe, Port Bell and Jinja. The Lake Victoria basin while generally rural has many major centers of population. Black Friday Sale! A Lake Fit for a Queen Nevertheless, others of these features are not consistent within the lakes and have not been adequately explained.…. At the lake’s northwestern corner are the 62 islands of the Sese archipelago, some of them of striking beauty. Being relatively shallow for its size, with a maximum depth of 84 meters (276 feet) and a mean depth of 40 meters (131 feet), Lake Victoria ranks as the seventh largest freshwater lake by volume, containing 2,750 cubic kilometers (2.2 million acre-feet) of water. (See East African Rift System.) Among the freshwater lakes of the world, it is exceeded in size only by Lake Superior in North America. An excellent map, known as the Muhammad al-Idrisi map from the calligrapher who developed it and dated from the 1160s, clearly depicts an accurate representation of Lake Victoria, and attributes it as the source of the Nile.

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