DThis small lake built on Middle Island only 600 meters long and 200 meters wide, The largest island in the La Recherche archipelago in southern Australia, world famous. It is characterized by its unusual pigmentation. permanently pink water outside, and even if water is poured into a vessel, its color remains the same.
This uninhabited island has a dense forest of Maleleuca and Eucalyptus trees and a narrow strip of dunes to the north. The little pink lake runs every year millions of tourists but because he’s the one Magical contrast with the green of the surrounding vegetation and the blue of the ocean Picture.
DNA sequencing to solve mystery
After its discovery in 1802, scientists suspected that its The color comes from bacteria living in the salt crust. Life While it is true that the lake is hypersaline, there is more of 340 grams of salt per liter of water (Eight times more saline than the surrounding ocean), but a new study narrows the lake’s unusual color down to one combination of microbes Return.
This study was based on Metagenomics, a well-known method for DNA sequencing In samples taken from the lake, which makes it possible to trace the genomes of various microbes. The results of the analysis revealed that Presence of microbes from four different regions including archaea, bacteria, viruses and algaewhich are able to tolerate very high salt concentrations.
So… why is the lake pink?
Sting among microorganisms found Salinibacter ruber, a scarlet bacterium, and Dunaliella salina, a red alga, out. The former contains a red pigment, while the latter is high in beta-carotene, a chemical used to color food due to its color, which ranges from yellow to orange depending on the concentration. Their color is due to carotenoids, pigments that protect them from extreme conditions.
This Extremely salty conditions allow long-term microbial resistanceWhich cannot be affected by external chemical influences also. The combination of Salinibacter ruber and Dunaliella salina gives Hillil Lake its characteristic pink color.
Dangerous only if swallowed in large amounts
Despite its unusual color, the lake is No known harmful effects on humans and no known toxicityIf swallowed, and you can even swim in its water.
It is not toxic, but if water is ingested in large quantities, it can cause severe dehydration or multiple organ failure.
Although not toxic in low concentrations, it can in case of excessive consumption Due to its high salt content mild or severe dehydration cause multiple organ failure and, in severe cases, death.