Is Lake Magadi a fresh water lake in Kenya

Is Lake Magadi a fresh water lake in Kenya : Lake Magadi is found in the Kenyan Rift Valley in the southernmost part of Kenya . The lake lies north of Tanzania’s Lake Natron ,they are both known for the thousands of Flamingos which inhabit the lake feeding on the algae .

Lake Magadi is located in Kajiado county  which is south of Nairobi, 106.4 kilometers from the Kenya’s capital of Nairobi by road, the journey that takes approximately 2hrs 6min.The lake is in the Great Rift Valley, it is 32 kilometers long or 20 miles and 3 kilometers or 2 miles wide. Lake Magadi lies in the catchment of faulted volcanic rocks. The lake is 80% covered by soda during the dry season,  the lake is known for its large attraction to the wading birds and Flamingos.

Lake Magadi is known to have no emissary, the lake is fed by the saline hot springs and the water flow and remain at the basin of the lake from which it only escapes from the lake through evaporation especially during the dry season. In the dry season period the temperatures of the region rises as the place becomes too hot and most of the evaporation takes place, during this time the algae of its seabed start  chemical reaction to the salt remaining and turn red or pink that is why Lake Magadi looks red or pink in sometimes.

Lake Magadi is one among the few places in the world where trona, which is a naturally occurring  mineral which contain sodium carbonate is found on its surface. The lake has a surface area of 100km², in some parts of the lake the trona may be as thick up to 40M .The lake is fed by some hot springs but it has not outlet, many of the hot springs are along the north-western and southern shorelines of the lake. The lake is an example of a saline pan, the lake water has high concentration of sodium carbonate brine, this is precipitates the mineral trona. In the dry season a thin layer which is less than 1meter layer of brine covers much of the saline pan, which in turn evaporates very fast and produces a vast expanse of white salt which cracks to produce large polygons. There is only one species of fish that managed to inhabit the high alkaline waters of the lake a Cichlid Alcolapia grahami it is commonly found around the hot springs pool where the water temperatures is less than 45°C.

Thousands of years ago lake Magadi  was a fresh water lake with many fish, this is during the period of the late Pleistocene to mid Holocene. This is evidence of this is preserved in the High Magadi Beds, a series of lacustrine and valcaniclastic sediments which have been preserved in various locations around the present shoreline. There are also evidence that at one time Lake Magadi and lake Natron were united as a single lake, Is Lake Magadi a fresh water lake in Kenya

Lake Magadi is also known for its vast deposit of siliceous Chert. The Chert is a hard, fine- grained sedimentary rock composed of microcrystalline or cryptocrystalline quartz which is the mineral that forms the silicon dioxide. The Chert come in many varieties. Lake Magadi has one of the unique habitats , the blue-green algae is what gives the lake its uniqueness. The Water of lake Magadi are full of the blue-green algae which are the main source of food to the beautiful Flamingo.

Birding in Lake Magadi

Lake is Magadi is one of the best destinations for day trip bird watching tour if you are on a business conference in Nairobi. It is one of the best bird watching routes in kenya with over 100 species of birds such as commonly seen the beautiful Chestnut-banded plover,  Northern Crombec ,Branded Parisoma ,White Bellied Canary, Cut-Throat ,Blue-capped Cordonbleu, Crimson-rumped waybill, Grey wren warbler, Taita Fiscal, Fischer’s Starling, Decken’s Hornbill, Fischer’s sparrow-Lark, Grey headed silverbill, Grey-Capped social-weaver, Red-fronted Tinkerbird, Straw-tailed Whydah and many other birds .

Animals found in Lake Magadi

Although the lake is well known for its wading birds ,it also hosts a good number of animals along the shores of the lake such as Antelopes,  Zebras,  wildebeest, hyenas, Giraffes,  African caracal, warthogs , Elephants, Buffaloes which are found on the conservancy which is just   to the south of the lake.

Lake Magadi Town

Magadi town is located at the Eastern shores of Lake Magadi and it is home to Magadi Soda factory ,which is now owned by Tata India since December 2005. The main business of the factory is just to produce soda ash, which has a range of industrial uses. Magadi got the international attention through Fernando Meirelles film The constant Gardener ,which is based on the book of the same name by john le carré  although in the film the shots are supposed to be at Lake Turkana but was done at Lake Magadi.

Lake Magadi  best time to visit

The best time to visit lake Magadi is during the dry seasons of between June to December ,this is because during the dry season the algae start to react to the salt and in turn changes the colour of the lake to pink or red. It is also during the dry season that most of the animals concentrate around the shores of the lake ,but the lake can be visited any time of the year, Is Lake Magadi a fresh water lake in Kenya

Things to do in Lake Magadi

Hot springs bath

One of the most outstanding attractions to most of the people visiting Lake Magadi is its hot springs. The hot springs is a natural curved depression on the ground with natural bubbling waters. People bath with the water ,because they believe that the water has medicinal value to the skin. They believe that the water has curing ailments to skin diseases and conditions such dry skin, pimples, rushes, acne and also helps in strengthening the bones in the body. Bathing is usually done early in the morning and late in the evening because during the day it is too hot.

Is Lake Magadi a fresh water lake in Kenya
Lake Magadi

Night out Bonfires

Most of the times in the Magadi, the sky is clear and it is very suitable for camping and open fire night Chats under the open stars filled skies. This is usually accompanied by traditional Maasai dances as the guests chat their night away while enjoying the music and dances, Is Lake Magadi a fresh water lake in Kenya

Game drive

Lake Magadi has some wild animals such as Wildebeest, zebras, antelopes, Giraffes ⁰⁰⁰l and many more. Majority of the predators and other animals can only be seen early in the morning and late in the evening from the nearby  conservancy because of the high temperatures of the day and they go in hiding during the day.

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