|Primary inflows||River Nyanzi
|Primary outflows||Kibimba River|
|Surface area||250 km2 (97 sq mi)|
|Surface elevation||1,110 m (3,640 ft)|
Lake Wamala is a small freshwater lake in Uganda.
Lake Wamala covers an area of approximately 250 square kilometres (97 sq mi). It is dotted by many islands including Lwanju Island, Mabo Island, and Bagwe Island, Kiraza, Kazinga, among others. The lake is associated with several rivers and wetlands. Several rivers flow into the lake, including the following:
- River Nyanzi
- River Kitenga
- River Kaabasuma
- River Mpamujugu
- River Bbimbye
River Kibimba drains westwards into Lake Victoria. On the other hand, River Katonga flows from Lake Victoria into Lake Wamala. This lake is of interest and immediate concern for Mubende District, Mityana District and Mpigi District because parts of it lie in each of the three contiguous administrative units in Central Uganda.
More than 4,000 years ago Lake Wamala was part of Lake Victoria, but has since receded into its current state. One apocryphal myth supposes that Lake Wamala derives its name from the last King “Wamala” of the Bachwezi dynasty. According to this legend King Wamala disappeared into Lake Wamala at a site near Lubajja fishing village called Nakyegalika and his spirit resides in the lake. The lake is of traditional and cultural significance to the people of Buganda in Central Uganda.
Flora and fauna
The vegetation surrounding Lake Wamala is dominated by papyrus, other spectacular floaters and water based vegetation. There are also trees such as Raphia and other palms. There exist remnants of a variety of species such as sitatunga, wild pigs, hippopotamus, bush buck, waterbuck, velvet monkey, baboon and a variety of birds such as guinea fowl and turaco. A diversity of water based birds are visible in the remaining wetlands. Existing fish species include tilapia, catfish and lungfish.
During the 1960s and the early 1970s, Lake Wamala was an important source of both fresh and smoked fish sold locally and in the big towns in central Uganda. Due to mismanagement and uncontrolled, unregulated commercial fishing on the lake, the fish were depleted in the mid-1970s.