The Yayla Lake in Denizli’s Buldan district is home to 80 percent of bird species in Turkey. The problem is that more than half of its water turned into earth due to reeds in recent years. A new project will rescue the lake covering an area of 50 hectares. The project has been prepared to prevent the lake from being filled with soil and reeds, and enable it to maintain its biological diversity.
Academic from Akdeniz and Süleyman Demirel universities have determined 188 types of plant species of 57 families in the lake and its surrounding. The cleaning process has started as part of the project. The three-stage work is set to finish in three years.
Denizli Governor Abdülkadir Demir said that Yayla Lake began to dry in recent years and public institutions had been working for many years about what to do to prevent it. He said that those works could not prevent the situation and some environmentalist circles were against the works. “They were right because nonfoundational works may harm the lake. We can give it damage while trying to rescue it. In the end of 2012, a work was carried out and this project was prepared. The lake had to be intervened as soon as possible. Otherwise it would have disappeared in 10 years. In this project, the plant and animal species was first determined here.”
Demir said that Yayla Lake was too rich in terms of biological diversity, adding, “It has been determined 188 types of plant species and among them seven species were in danger of extinct. Some of them are very rare in Turkey. Twenty-six of them are used for medical purposes. The total bird species is 158 here. Among 40 types of raptors living in Turkey, 12 are living here. This is an incredible figure. It is almost 80 percent of all bird species in Turkey.”
The governor said that a 40-hectare area of the lake was filled with reeds and another 30 hectares were water. “It means that more than half of the lake dried up. This is why we urgently must start working to save it. An area of 24 hectares will be cleaned and the works will be finished in three years.
We will save the Yayla Lake and will have a very different lake here after three years,” Demir said.