Artificial lake, South America

Artificial lake, South America

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Credit: PATRICK LANDMANN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Artificial lake. This reservoir, in Petit-Saut, French Guyana, was created by the installation of the Barrage de Petit-Saut, a dam used to provide hydroelectric power. When this region was flooded, as a result of the dam stemming the water flow, it created a series of manmade islands. These are being monitored by ecologists as examples of biotopes, geographically defined environments where specific plants and animals live together in ecological communities. The dead wood here, the tips of trees submerged by the flooding, is now a habitat for epiphytic plants such as orchids.

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