Lake Ikeda (池田湖, Ikeda-ko) is a caldera lake located 40 km south of Kagoshima city; Kyūshū island, Japan. It is perhaps best known to tourists as the location of the purported sightings of a monster named Issie, and as the largest lake on Kyūshū island with a surface area of 11 km² and a shoreline length of 15 km.
Lake Ikeda with Mount Kaimon
|Catchment area||41 km2 (16 sq mi)|
|Surface area||11 km2 (4.2 sq mi)|
|Average depth||135 m (443 ft)|
|Max. depth||233 m (764 ft)|
|Water volume||1.47 km3 (1,190,000 acre⋅ft)|
|Residence time||1.7 years|
|Shore length1||15.1 km (9.4 mi)|
|1 Shore length is not a well-defined measure.|
The development of the areas surrounding Lake Ikeda has caused the quality of the water to decline since 1955. Other causes include an irrigation project, developed for agricultural field and households in the area, which was initiated in 1965, for it the courses of three nearby rivers were diverted into the lake. The irrigation system has been in operation since 1982, resulting in a considerable improvement of the water quality although since the 1950s the transparency of the lake, though still ranked No. 7 in the world, has decreased from 26.8 m to approximately 5m.
Lake Ikeda is known to harbour large eels, some six feet in length. In 1998, a benthological survey was conducted in the lake, which found that there were no zoobenthos, although two tubificid oligochaetes and a chironomid were found. The lake was already considered oligotrophic until the 1940s, but one theory for the further drop in underwater life is that the existing life in Lake Ikeda has been affected by Global Warming.
Lake Ikeda is important in the local Shinto folklore of the surrounding regions. Local religious tradition originally held the lake as the origin of humankind.
- "Major Destinations in Japan - Kyushu Island". www.jnto.go.jp. Archived from the original on 2008-01-08. Retrieved 2008-05-21.
- "International Lake Environment Committee article on Lake Ikeda". International Lake Environment Committee. Archived from the original on 2007-07-15. Retrieved 2008-05-21.
- "Disappearance of deep profundal zoobenthos in Lake Ikeda, southern Kyushu, Japan, with relation to recent environmental changes in the lake". Ingenta Connect.com. December 2006. Retrieved 2008-05-21.
- Ikeda and Yamagawa: National catalogue of the active volcanoes in Japan - Japan Meteorological Agency
- Ikeda - Geological Survey of Japan
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