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Lakes and Ponds

A lake or pond is a body of water confined to a natural depression in the earth’s surface called a basin. They are different from rivers and streams because their waters are comparatively still. Statewide, there are over 6,000 lakes and ponds which provide a vital resource for recreation, agriculture and as a source of drinking water for both people and domesticated animals. These diverse freshwater reservoirs also provide vital habitat for wild aquatic and terrestrial species.

  • Go With The Flow: How Lakes and Ponds Form

    Category: General Article

    What's the difference between a lake and pond? Would you believe it has to do with depth and sunshine?

  • The Biology of Lakes and Ponds

    Category: General Article

    Lake and ponds can be particularly vulnerable to pollutants because these basins are influenced by all kinds of external factors.

  • Types of Lakes and Ponds

    Category: General Article

    Lakes are much more than just water-filled depressions. Learn how they can be formed by everything from volcanic eruption to human construction.

  • Malheur National Wildlife Refuge

    Category: Landmark Place

    Established in the early twentieth century after the area's bird population was decimated by hunting, the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge is today one of the best birding sites in Oregon.

Slideshow: Lakes and Ponds

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    Perhaps Oregon's most famous lake, Crater Lake formed in the caldera of an extinct volcano.

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    The still waters of this coastal pond are fed primarily by precipitation and runoff from the surrounding hills.

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    Some lakes and ponds may exist year round, while others will be temporary depending on season and rainfall.

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    Woody and other organic debris often settle in lakes and ponds, providing food and habitat for aquatic animals.

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    Lakes have always attracted people, from prehistory to the modern day. This is Devil's Lake near Lincoln City.

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    This pool of water is fed by one of the many waterfalls you can visit along the Columbia River Gorge.

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    Lakes and ponds can be artificial as well. This beautiful example is at the Lan Su Chinese Gardens in Portland.

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