Fuxian Lake

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Fuxian Lake
Fuxian Lake and Luchong Scenic Resort.jpg
Fuxian Lake and Luchong Scenic Resort
Location Yunnan Province
Coordinates 24°30′08″N 102°53′20″E / 24.50225°N 102.888888889°E / 24.50225; 102.888888889Coordinates: 24°30′08″N 102°53′20″E / 24.50225°N 102.888888889°E / 24.50225; 102.888888889
Primary inflows Liangwang River, Dongda River, Jianshan River
Primary outflows Haikou River
Basin countries China
Max. length 31.5 km (20 mi)
Max. width 11.5 km (7 mi)
Surface area 211 km2 (100 sq mi)
Average depth 89.6 m (294 ft)
Max. depth 155 m (509 ft)
Water volume 18,900×10^6 m3 (670×10^9 cu ft)
Surface elevation 1,721 m (5,646 ft)
Islands Gushan
Settlements Chengjiang County
References [1]
Black-headed Gulls in Fuxian Lake.
Gushan Hill in Fuxian Lake.

Fuxian Lake (Chinese: 抚仙湖; pinyin: Fǔxiān Hú) stretches out through Chengjiang, Jiangchuan and Huaning Counties in Yunnan Province, spanning an area of 212 square kilometers. The lake is ranked third largest in Yunnan, after Dian Lake and Erhai Lake. Also the deepest lake in Yunnan, it is 155 meters deep at its greatest depth. It is also the third deepest fresh water lake in China, after Tianchi and Kanas Lake.[1]

Flora and fauna[edit]

Fuxian Lake is known for its unique fauna, including many endemic species. However, its relative isolation makes it vulnerable to biological invasions and pollution.[2][3]

In total, there are 25 native fish species in the lake, including 12 endemics.[4] The situation for many of these is precarious because they have been negatively impacted by introduction of exotic species of fish, habitat degradation, water pollution, and overfishing. The table below lists endemic species, all cyprinids, that have declined strongly and are rated by the IUCN; some of them may already be extinct.

Species IUCN assessment Comment
Poropuntius chonglingchungi Critically endangered Possibly extinct (not seen since the 1980s)
Cyprinus fuxianensis Critically endangered Possibly extinct (not seen in a survey in 1995)
Schizothorax lepidothorax Endangered
Sinocyclocheilus tingi Endangered Strong decline
Tor yunnanensis Endangered Possibly extinct (not seen since the 1990s)
Anabarilius grahami Not assessed Nearing extinction[3]

A fungus Dyrithiopsis lakefuxianensis growing on submerged wood has been collected and described as a new species to science from Fuxian Lake, as suggested by its scientific name.[5]

The prehistoric Fuxianhuia, significant in discussions of arthropod evolution, is also named after the lake, where it was discovered in 1987.

Lost city[edit]

In 2001 it was reported that earthenware and stonework covering an area of approximately 2.4–2.7 square kilometres had been discovered beneath the lake. Carbon dating circa 2007 confirmed an age of 1750 years, or approximately 257AD. It is thought that the remains may represent buildings from the ancient Dian Kingdom that slid in to the lake during an earthquake.[6][7]

In 2006, CCTV made an additional survey. Carbon dating in 2007 found relics to be roughly 1,750 years old. In October 2014 additional research was made on the site by a multidisciplinary team. Portions were mapped and 42 handmade stone artifacts were recovered from a depth of seven metres.[8][9]

Notable sites[edit]

There are two major sites west of the lake: a military base at Lijiashan (speculated to be used for submarine testing and other forms of nautical engineering) and a nearby tourism resort.


Fuxian Lake
Panorama of Fuxian Lake taken from mountains to the west.


  1. ^ a b Sumin, Wang; Hongshen, Dou (1998). Lakes in China. Beijing: Science Press. p. 374. ISBN 7-03-006706-1. 
  2. ^ Cui, Y. D.; Liu, X. Q.; Wang, H. Z. (2008). "Macrozoobenthic community of Fuxian Lake, the deepest lake of southwest China". Limnologica - Ecology and Management of Inland Waters 38 (2): 116–125. doi:10.1016/j.limno.2007.10.003. 
  3. ^ a b Qin, J.; Xu, J.; Xie, P. (2007). "Diet overlap between the endemic fish Anabarilius grahami (Cyprinidae) and the exotic noodlefish Neosalanx taihuensis (Salangidae) in Lake Fuxian, China". Journal of Freshwater Ecology 22 (3): 365–370. doi:10.1080/02705060.2007.9664165. 
  4. ^ Yang, J.X. and Y.R. Chen, editors (1995). The biology and resource utilization of the fishes of Fuxian Lake, Yunnan. Yunnan Science and Technology Press, Kunming, China. ISBN 9787541607677
  5. ^ Jeewon, R.; L. Cai; E. C. Y Liew; K. Q Zhang; K. D Hyde (2003-09-01). "Dyrithiopsis lakefuxianensis gen. et sp. nov. from Fuxian Lake, Yunnan, China, and notes on the taxonomic confusion surrounding Dyrithium". Mycologia 95 (5): 911–920. doi:10.2307/3762019. 
  6. ^ "Ancient Buildings Found in Fuxian Lake". 2001-06-04. Retrieved 2010-08-20. 
  7. ^ "Mysterious Fuxian Lake's secrets told". Retrieved 2010-08-20. 
  8. ^ "New underwater archeological discoveries made at Fuxian". 23 October 2014. 
  9. ^ "云南抚仙湖发现水下史前遗址构件(组图)". 16 October 2014.