Vegetated Shore from Kipili, Tanganyika, Tanzania

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Tanzania, Rukwa, Kipili

Tanganyika is the second deepest and largest Lake by volume in the world. Inflows are Ruzizi, Malagarasi and Kalambo Rivers, and the outflow is Lukuga River. While the main water influx is rain, and water loss is from evaporation.

Lake was created by tectonic movements. Because of the tectonic movements, the Lake demersal basin structure was changed many times in history. Therefore the inhabitants of the Lake were extinct or adapted quickly to new conditions.

Thanks to adaptive distribution capabilities of the aquatic creatures and massive species diversification;1500 species of fish, invertebrates and plants (600 of them endemic) are living in Lake. Tanganyika is a valuable source for searching unique species and as a microcosm in which to assess the processes of evolution that have led to this diversity.

BIN of Kipili shore is a shallow, and stony habitat contains Phragmites australis and a tree root which directly affected by the rising water level of Lake.(Bib.1-2,Sit.1-6,15,22)

Submitted by
Fatih Özdemir
Approved by
Ad Konings & Michael Salter
-7.4444442, 30.5922222
Geographical region
Eastern Africa
Drainage Basin
River catchment
Water body type
Water body name
Lake Tanganyika
Water body part
Water body course
Water body: tributary of
Tributary name

Videos above and below water

Water Chemistry

Water information

Water type
Brackish water
Water color
Clear water
Water transparency
Concentration of sediments
Water temperature
30.2 °C
Water flow/curent

Chemical parameters

9 mg/l
28.5 mg/l
Dissolved Oxygen
0.73 %

Substrate in nature

Stone form
Submerged terrestrial vegetation

Aquatic Biotope

Date of collecting
Collecting area
Shore line
Water depth
Air temperature
28 °C
Full sun


Affected by human activity
Affected by human activity
Surrounding area

BIN is situated in the shoreline of Kipili. It is in the entrance of a bay which is occupied by human for several purposes. There are islands near, and human occupies some. Before water body surrounding area has enough large plain area that can be settled by humans, then hills and mountains start. The tough surrounding area is a forestry area, as a result of human settlements some part of trees is cut down.

When we further go up towards hills, we can see forests. The ground is stony and mostly covered with grassy plants. Human activities in the surrounding area are affecting underwater life. Two seasons can be seen on the region, and they are wet season which is between October and April with high precipitation, thunderstorms and dry season which is from May until the end of August with continuous winds and little precipitation. Ref. (Bib.2,Sit. 8-10,16,19,20,22)

Underwater landscape

BIN is a part of Kipili shoreline which is stayed underwater by a rise of water level and not deeper than 1.5 meters. As usual in Tanganyika coastline, the extension of the surrounding area goes on with same structure to inside Lake in here too, but unlike identified and known shallow rocky/stony shoreline habitats of Lake, reeds, fragments of dead grassy plants and a chopped tree root exist in this habitat. The bottom is covered with a mixed type (mostly roundish) of middle-sized, different coloured stones and it is occupied by reeds (Phragmites australisis) roots or branches; therefore sand is rarely seen in habitat. Decayed organisms of the surrounding area create the perfect nutritive environment for reeds and other species, so in this habitat, lots of different species can be seen which come for feeding. Because of being situated in a bay, waves are generally weak, this causes demersal area stay stable so species can compete for food and reeds can grow up easily, but weak waves also serve mid-level of sedimentation. Colour of the water is changed by the time of the day as blue or green. Even though anthropogenic pollution affects the quality of water, however, visibility is still in a high level. Due to the mentioned water quality, habitat is highly vegetated with Phragmites australisis but to avoid the danger of camouflaging crocodiles residents chop the reeds. Ref.(Bib.1,2,Sit.8-12,19,20,22)


  • Altolamprologus compressiceps
  • Chalinochromis cyanophleps
  • Chalinochromis sp. bifernatus
  • Cunningtonia longiventralis
  • Cyathopharynx foae
  • Eretmodus cyanostictus
  • Lamprologus callipterus
  • Lamprologus lemairii
  • Haplotaxodon microlepis
  • Haplotaxodon trifasciatus
  • Lepidiolamprologus elongatus
  • Lepidiolamprologus kamambae
  • Lepidiolamprologus mimicus
  • Lepidiolamprologus profundicola
  • Neolamprologus furcifer
  • Neolamprologus sexfasciatus
  • Neolamprologus tetracanthus
  • Neolamprologus timidus
  • Ophthalmotilapia nasuta
  • Ophthalmotilapia ventralis
  • Perissodus microlepis
  • Perissodus paradoxus
  • Perissodus straeleni
  • Petrochromis ephippium
  • Petrochromis famula
  • Petrochromis polyodon
  • Petrochromis sp. kipili brown
  • Petrochromis sp.macrognathus rainbow
  • Petrochromis sp.texas blue
  • Telmatochromis dhonti
  • Telmatochromis vittatus
  • Tropheus brichardi ulwile
  • Tropheus brichardi kipili
  • Xenotilapia nasus
  • Xenotilapia papilio sunflower

Wetland plant:

  • Phragmites australis
Threats to ecology

Humans settle some parts in the coastline of Lake Tanganyika for the fishery, agriculture, industry and tourism. Approximately one million population is living around the Lake Tanganyika area. The protein source of the inhabitants of this region is mainly the aquatic organisms in the Lake. The dense human population in the shoreline of Lake causes anthropogenic and industrial wastes, deforestation of lands and overfishing. Pollutants and rising erosion are affecting underwater life in different ways such as decreased water quality, sedimentation in the narrow habitable zone for species and development of invasive plants. The climate change, uncontrolled overfishing and the other human-based problems are adverse effects for the underwater life of Lake. Because of these unfavorable impacts, biodiversity is diminishing and development of plankton which are nutritive foods for many fish species is slowing down in the Lake. People living around the Lake should be educated about sustainable fishing practices. Besides, legal regulations on deforestation and control measures for industrial facilities should be taken for the future of the Lake. Ref (Sit.13,14,22)

Riparian zone

Trees near the aquatic habitat
Few - Phragmites australis

Comment by the expert

Ad Konings:

Crieria 2: Several species are mentioned that do not occur in the BIN: A. compressiceps, C. cyanophleps, H. trifasciatus, L. kamambae, L. mimicus, X. nasus, and a number others would be extremely rare to find in such a shallow vegetated area.

Crieria 3: Lake Tanganyika does not have brackish water, i.e. no mixing with salt water from ocean and/or salt lakes. The temperature of 30.2C is too high and was probably measured in the upper few cm of the water along beach after the sun had warmed it up. GH is about 200 mg/L (not 9 mg/L) and KH is about 300 mg/L (not 28.5 mg/L) and Dissolved oxygen is close to 100% at the surface (not 0.73% which would kill most cichlids from suffocation).

Michael Salter: There are number of errors related to water parameters, the most glaring of which is that it is brackish. Some species listed do not occur in the biotope either.