Earth Snapshot RSS Feed Twitter

Étang Saumâtre and Lake Enriquillo, Haiti and Dominican Republic

18.5N 71.9W

February 21st, 2012 Category: Lakes

Haiti - January 2nd, 2012

This image shows the landscape of Hispaniola, a Caribbean island shared by Haiti (west) and the Dominican Republic (east). Visible by the left edge is the Gulf of Gonâve, a large gulf along the western coast of Haiti. Haiti’s capital city, Port-au-Prince, is located on the coast of the gulf. Several islands are located in the gulf, the largest being Gonâve Island, followed by the much smaller Cayemites.

Visible inland on the main island, southeast of the eastern tip of Gonâve Island, are Étang Saumâtre and Lake Enriquillo. The former is a brackish pond that is the largest lake in Haiti and the second largest lake in Hispaniola, after Lake Enriquillo. It supports over 100 species of waterfowl, flamingos and American crocodiles, one of the few lakes of its type in the world to harbour such fauna. The colour of the lake is an intense shade of blue. 

Lake Enriquillo is a lake in the Dominican Republic and is the largest lake and lowest point in the Caribbean and the lowest point on any ocean island. It is located in a rift valley formed by the Enriquillo-Plantain Garden fault that extends 79 miles (127 km) from Port-au-Prince Bay in Haiti in the west, to near Neiba Bay in the Dominican Republic in the east (this small bay appears bright turquoise here). This fault was responsible for the catastrophic 2010 Haiti earthquake .

Leave a Reply