Lake Razelm

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Lake Razelm
Located on Romania's Black Sea coast
Located on Romania's Black Sea coast
Lake Razelm
Location in Romania
Coordinates 44°49′36″N 28°59′05″E / 44.82667°N 28.98472°E / 44.82667; 28.98472Coordinates: 44°49′36″N 28°59′05″E / 44.82667°N 28.98472°E / 44.82667; 28.98472
Primary outflows Lake Golovița
Basin countries Romania
Max. length 28.5 kilometres (17.7 mi)
Max. width 15 kilometres (9.3 mi)
Surface area 511 square kilometres (197 sq mi)
Residence time 300-600 days
Islands Popina Island
Settlements Sarichioi

Lake Razelm or Lake Razim (Romanian: Limanul Razim, Limanul Razelm) is the name of a large freshwater lagoon on the shores of the Black Sea in Romania, south of the Danube Delta and part of its World Heritage Site. It is the largest liman in Romania.[1]

The name is also sometimes applied to the complex it forms with several other limans and liman. This complex can be separated into two subgroups. The northern subgroup contains freshwater Razelm and Lake Golovița, which are connected by a channel 1.9 miles (3.1 km) wide, whereas the southern group is made up of salt lakes. All these lakes cover an area of about 1000 km², 400 km² of it being the area of Lake Razelm alone.


When the Razelm/Golovița system was closed from the ocean in the late 1970s, this resulted in several changes to the ecological conditions of the system, including an decrease in salinity to almost zero, an increase in refreshment time to over a year, and episodes of eutrophication.[2] Despite this environmental degradation, the system remains an important habitat. Three families of cockles could be found in Romania in the 1960s, and the two that remain are found only in Razelm (albeit at reduced densities).[3] Popina Island at the north end of the lake is an important refuge for many bird species and invertebrates.

Roman fortification Layout on Razelm's Insula Bisericutei


  1. ^ "Geography, Meteorology, and Environment". Romanian Statistical Yearbook (PDF). 2008. 
  2. ^ Dinu, Irina; Umgiesser, Georg; Bajo, Marco; de Pascalis, Francesca; Stănică, Adrian; Pop, Cornel; Dimitriu, Radu; Nichersu, Iulian; Constantinescu, Adrian (2015). "Modelling of the response of the Razelm-Sinoe lagoon system to physical forcing". Geo-Eco-Marina. 21. doi:10.5281/zenodo.45064. Retrieved 24 February 2017. 
  3. ^ Popa, Oana P.; et al. (2009). "Contributions to the knowledge of the present Limnocardiidae fauna (Mollusca: bivalvia) from Romania" (PDF). The Journal of "Grigore Antipa" National Museum of Natural History. 52: 7–15.