A lake can be defined as a body of water surrounded by land and it’s interesting that the body can be of any fluid like oil too, and that’s something new. The word “lake” can be traced from the languages like Middle English in which it was called ‘lak’ probably a conflation of old French “lac” and its source Latin in which it was called ‘lacus’. Lakes are an indispensable part of the environment as 97.5% of the water on earth exists in the seas, and nearly all of the remaining freshwater is locked up in the Antarctic or Arctic ice caps or as groundwater.
Therefore, we can freely access only the water in lakes (0.007%) in rivers (0.002%). Of these, lakes are the best “available freshwater source on the Earth’s surface.” Lakes are valued as water sources and for fishing, water transport, recreation, and tourism. Lakes form in places of depression on the earth crust and most lakes especially in the northern hemisphere are formed due to the melting of the great glaciers which formed in the last ice age and so lakes are also a reminder of the cold ice age which was the most recent glacial period within the current ice age occurring during the last years of the Pleistocene, from approximately 110,000 to 12,000 years ago which is also the time when humans sprouted and flourished hunting mammoths and other animals.
There are large lakes, small lakes, deep lakes and whole bunch of great lakes all around the globe but today let’s take a look at the top ten largest lakes by surface area in the world.
The Great Slave Lake from Canada is the world’s tenth largest lake with an area of 28930 square kilometers. The Great Slave Lake is the deepest lake in the entire North America too. North American Aboriginal People were the first settlers around the lake, building communities including Dettah, which still exists today.
British fur trader Samuel Hearne explored the area in 1771 and crossed the frozen lake, which he initially named Lake Athapapuskow. Later the 10th largest lake in the world was renamed by the same man after Slavery.
The ninth largest on our list is Lake Malawi which is one of the Great African Lakes with a total area of 30044 square kilometers. The jewel in the crown of the Malawi’s tourist attractions is Lake Malawi, “discovered” by the missionary-explorer Dr David Livingstone just over 150 years ago.
This vast body of freshwater which is also the ninth largest lake in the world and fringed by beaches of golden sand is not only a scenic wonderland but it is also rich in fish harvest due to which it plays an important role in the economy of the country.
The Great Bear Lake is the largest lake entirely in Canada, the fourth largest in North America, and the eighth largest in the world with a total surface area of 31080 square kilometers. The lake is well stocked with fish, including relic species thought to have moved south from the Arctic Ocean ahead of the glaciers. Thus the lake is also important from a economic prospect.
The south and west shores are wooded, mostly with stunted spruce. This eighth largest lake in the world is icebound for 8 months of the year, often into July, and is served by tugs and steamers when free.