Reference work entry
A saline lake is also known as a mineral lake or mineralised lake. The water has a salinity over 35 g/l or over 24.7 g/L. The lake water has a high chloride content and is highly mineralised, so its hardness is greater than that of a freshwater lake. Saline lakes are sometimes called salt lakes. Saline lakes in China are generally the moderately trophic or low trophic types. In most lakes, the salinity continues to increase over time. These lakes have two main causes of formation: (1) they are relics of an ancient ocean; or (2) they are at the ends of inland rivers. China’s saline lakes are mainly located in the western region. This region contains more saline lakes than freshwater lakes, and they account for approximately 55% of the total lake surface area. The Jilantai Saline Pool in Inner Mongolia and the Chake Saline Lake in Qinghai Province are typical examples (Fig. 2).
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