Bosten Lake

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Bosten Lake
Bosten-Lake (Bosten-See), Xinjiang, China, 87.00E, 42.00N.jpg
Satellite picture (2 November 2004)
LocationBayingolin Prefecture, Xinjiang
Coordinates42°00′N 87°00′E / 42.000°N 87.000°E / 42.000; 87.000Coordinates: 42°00′N 87°00′E / 42.000°N 87.000°E / 42.000; 87.000
Catchment area56,000 km2 (22,000 sq mi)
Basin countriesChina
Max. length55 km (34 mi)
Max. width25 km (16 mi)
Surface area1,000 km2 (390 sq mi)
Average depth8.15 m (26.7 ft)
Max. depth666 m (2,185 ft)
Water volume8,150,000,000 m3 (2.88×1011 cu ft)
Surface elevation1,048 m (3,438 ft)

Bosten Lake (traditional Chinese: ; simplified Chinese: 博斯腾湖; pinyin: téng, Uyghur: باغراش كۆلى‎ / Бағраш Көли / Baghrash Köli / Baƣrax Kɵli, Chagatai: Bostang) is a freshwater lake on the northeastern rim of the Tarim Basin, about 20 km (12 mi) east of Yanqi and 57 km (35 mi) northeast of Korla, Xinjiang, China in the Bayin'gholin Mongol Autonomous Prefecture. Covering an area of about 1,000 km2 (390 sq mi) (together with adjacent small lakes), it is the largest lake in Xinjiang and one of the largest inland freshwater lakes in China.[1] Bosten lake receives water inflow from a catchment area of 56,000 km2 (22,000 sq mi).[2]

The lake's Uyghur and Chinese names are sometimes rendered as Bosten Hu, Bagrax-hu, Bagrasch-köl, Baghrasch köl, Bagratsch-kul, Bositeng Lake or Bositeng Hu.

The Kaidu River is the most important tributary to Lake Bosten, accounting for about 83% of its water inflow,[1] other significant tributaries are the Huangshui Ditch (Chinese: 黃水溝), the Qingshui River (清水河), and Wulasite River (烏拉司特河).[3]

An active fishery exists on the lake. Until the early 1970s, two cyprinid species, Schizothorax biddulphi and Aspiorhynchus laticeps, the latter of which is endemic to Bosten Lake and the Yarkand River, were responsible for 80 percent of the annual catch.[4] During the years 1962 to 1965, various carp species (bighead, black, silver, grass, common, and crucian carp) were introduced into the lake.[4] In the 1970s, these species become major targets of the fishing activities.[4] Since 1978, the introduced European perch has been the dominating species in the catches from Bosten Lake.[4]


  1. ^ a b Seespiegelschwankungen des Bosten-Sees (in German)[permanent dead link]
  2. ^ Mischke, S. (6–11 April 2003). "Holocene environmental fluctuations of Lake Bosten (Xinjiang, China) inferred from ostracods and stable isotopes". EGS - AGU - EUG Joint Assembly, Abstracts from the meeting held in Nice, France, abstract #6609. European Geosciences Union. Bibcode:2003EAEJA.....6609M.
  3. ^ Wei, K.Y.; Lee, M.Y.; Wang, C.H.; Wang, Y.; Lee, T.Q.; Yao, P. (February 2002). "Stable isotopic variations in oxygen and hydrogen of waters in Lake Bosten region, southern Xinjiang, western China". Western Pacific Earth Sciences. 2 (1): 67–82.
  4. ^ a b c d K. F. Walker and H.Z. Yang, Fish and Fisheries in Western China, in Fish and Fisheries at Higher Altitudes: Asia (FAO Fisheries Technical Paper), December 1999

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