Lake Ziway

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Lake Ziway is one of the freshwater Rift Valley lakes of Ethiopia. It is located about 167km (60 miles) south of Addis Ababa, on the border between the regions of Oromia and the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples. The town of Ziway lies on the lake’s western shore.

Lake Ziway measure 25 kilometers long and 20 kilometers wide, with a surface area of 434 square kilometers. It has a maximum depth of 14 meters and located at an elevation of 1,846 meters. There are five islands which include Debre Sina, Galila, Bird Island and, perhaps most notably Tullu Gudo, home to a monastery said to have housed the Ark of the Covenant around the ninth century. The lake is fed primarily by two rivers, the Meki and the Katar, but does not always have an outflow. The lake is known for its population of birds and hippopotamuses as well as supports a fishing industry; according to the Ethiopian Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture 2,454 tons of fish are landed each year, which the department estimates is 83% of its sustainable amount.

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