Pink lakes Found

Pink lakes Found

BYLINE; words and video by Ben Hulme, Ed Leicester and Emilia Allcroft


Scientists have been astonished by a series of bizarre changes after large lakes have turned pink.

Lake Hillier near Brisbane has been transformed into a strange, neon landscape after a rise in green algae levels caused the unusual outcome.

Wellington scientist, Mrs Brown, explained that the pink color is caused by the algae in the lake producing carotids – a mainly yellow, orange or red pigment such as Dunaliella Salina. This particular type of a type of green micro-alga is found in sea salt fields such as the Hillier Lake which is 600m long and connects to the Pacific Ocean.

Neon: Lake Hillier in western Australia

She said, “The algae in the lake has been multiplying due to the hot weather in the dry season and it loves to feed off the salt –  because of the low water level, the salt has been more accessible.

“The algae has produced a chemical called beta-carotene, it is that chemical that has turned the water pink, but unfortunately it won’t last very long and it will turn to normal when the temperature drops and that is also what happens with flamingos.”

Brisbane resident, Denise Flynn, a relative of a Wellington pupil, said, “When I visited the Lake Hiller it was so weird and beautiful, the color was a shocking pink when the light was bright and when it was behind a cloud it was darker.”

Shockingly, this I not the only incident of this type! The Chinese Yellow River has, since 2006, turned. ivory white around the city of Lanzhou. In addition, the Tiete river in south east Brazil has been reported to fill with foam after phosphate leaked into the river during the dry ran into the river during the dry season.!



Mrs Brown, Scientist

Talks to Wellington news reporters about the pink lakes.