Ayamaru Lakes

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Ayamaru Lakes
Location Bird's Head Peninsula
Coordinates 1°16′S 132°12′E / 1.267°S 132.200°E / -1.267; 132.200
Primary inflows Framu River
Primary outflows Ayamaru River
Basin countries Indonesia
Average depth 30 ft (9.1 m)
Max. depth 40 ft (12 m)
Surface elevation 180 ft (55 m)
Islands Kaymundan Island
Settlements Greemakolo, Rawas

The Ayamaru Lakes (sometimes spelled Ajamaru) are a group of lakes found in the west-central part of the Bird's Head Peninsula in West Papua, Indonesia. The lakes are named after the Ayamaru people that lived here for thousands of years. The nearest village to the group is Greemakolo. The many villages around the Ayamaru Lakes started the Ayamaru language.

Physical features[edit]

The group makes up Lake Ayamaru and Lake Hain. The lakes are surrounded by many low hills. The water in both of the lakes are a clear blue because of the rich material found in the water. There are deep holes in the lakes that lead to underwater caverns. The vivid colors on the north shores of the Ayamaru Lakes are the result of pigmented bacteria in the microbial mats that grow around the edges of the mineral-rich water. The bacteria produce colors ranging from orange to red; the amount of color in the microbial mats depends on the ratio of chlorophyll to carotenoids and on the temperature of the water which favors one bacterium over another. The pH in the lake exceeds to 8.0.

Lake Ayamaru[edit]

The largest lake in the group, Lake Ayamura has a more warm temperature than Lake Hatlin. In the center of the lake is Kaymundan Island, a small island filled with trees. On the northwestern shore of the lake is the village of Greemakolo. The lake is a bit foggy because of the temperatures up to 71 °F (22 °C). This is also where the Ayamaru River starts. The people from the surrounding villages use the lake for fishing and bathing.

Lake Hain[edit]

Lake Hain is made up of two lakes and has temperatures up to 100 °F (38 °C). This is where the Framu River flows in. Most of the lake is covered with smoke because of its high temperatures. It is actually a hot spring.


Most of the wildlife are found in the wetlands of the southern shores of Lake Ayamura. There are four endemic fishes in the lakes, the Ajamaru Lakes rainbowfish (Melanotaenia ajamaruensis), Boeseman's rainbowfish (Melanotaenia boesemani), Vogelkop blue-eye (Pseudomugil reticulatus) and Hoese's goby (Glossogobius hoesei). Non-endemic natives include the shortfin tandan (Neosilurus brevidorsalis) and fimbriate gudgeon (Oxyeleotris fimbriata), while several other fish species have been introduced by humans.[1]

Additionally, the Parastacid crayfish Cherax boesemani is endemic to the lakes.[2]


  1. ^ Pasveer, J. M. (2004) The Djief Hunters, 26,000 Years of Rainforest Exploitation on the Bird's Head of Papua, Indonesia. p. 204. Modern Quaternary Research in Southeast Asia, vol. 17. ISBN 978-9058096630
  2. ^ Lukhaup, C., and R. Pekny (2008). Cherax (Astaconephrops) boesemani, a new species of crayfish (Crustacea: Decapoda: Parastacidae) from the centre of the Vogelkop Peninsula in Irian Jaya (West New Guinea), Indonesia. Zoologische Mededelingen, 82