- TSOMORIRI LAKE
- TSOKAR LAKE
Being part of the wetland reserve under Ramsar site, it is actual known as Tsomoriri Wetland Conservation Reserve . Tsomoriri or Lake Moriri is a lake in the Changthang area in Jammu and Kashmir. The lake is at an altitude of 4,595 m (15,075 ft). The lake sits between Ladakh, India to the North, Tibet to the east, and Zanskar in the west.
The lake is fed by springs and snow-melt from mountains on the Changthang plateau. Water enters the lake in two major stream systems, one entering the lake from the north, the other from the southwest. Both stream systems create extensive marshes where they enter the lake. It formerly had an outlet to the south, but this has become blocked and the lake has become land locked. As a result, the water is now becoming saline. The lake is oligotrophic in nature, and its waters are alkaline.
The Tso-Kar Lake is known as ‘White Lake’ because the white salt of the water deposits all over the lake shores. Tso-kar Lake is the smallest lake among the three important lakes in Ladakh. Tso-kar Lake is situated in Rupshu Valley, about 250 kms southeast from its principle town, Leh. Tso-kar Lake is located at an altitude of 4660m/15280ft in the Changthang region of South Eastern Ladakh. Tso-kar Lake is at a distance of around 50 kms from the Tso-moriri Lake. This Lake is important breeding grounds for Bar-headed Geese, Great Crested Grebe, Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea, Lesser Sand Plover Charadrius mongolus and various terns and gulls. It is possible to watch Black-necked Cranes foraging in the boggy marshes east of Tso-Kar, or Tibetan Sandgrouse Syrrhaptes tibetanus coming to drink mid-morning in the northern plains. The shores of both lakes are occupied by waders, whilst the adjoining grasslands and barren hillsides host accentors, larks and finches, including Plain-backed Snowfinch Pyrgilauda blanfordi. Resident raptors include Golden Eagle, Upland Buzzard, Common Kestrel Falco tinnunculus and Little Owl Athene noctua.
From late August onwards, flocks of migrating waterfowl and waders frequent both lakes, when, occasionally, large flocks of kites, harriers and other raptors appear. Mammals include wolf, fox, weasel, kiang (wild ass), blue sheep, argali, marmot, woolly hare and pika. Some characteristic and rare birds found in Ladakh: