What is the Dead Sea?
The Dead Sea is not a sea but a saltwater lake! Yes, the Dead Sea is the second saltiest water body in the world with a salt content of 33% as compared to 2 or 3% of the other Seas around the world.
Why is the Dead Sea so salty?
Ever wondered why the Dead Sea is so salty? There are no rivers originating from the Dead Sea. All the rivers and streams from nearby mountains come and drain in the Dead Sea but there is no outlet. Thus the only source of reduction is evaporation and salt does not evaporate, so it is left behind. The rate at which water evaporates from the Dead Sea is much higher than the rate at which it is replenished by rains.
Where is the Dead Sea?
The Dead Sea borders Israel, the West Bank and Jordan. The Dead Sea has a heavy and dense salt content that animals and marine life cannot flourish in it. There is no marine life and no fish in the Dead Sea. So, even birds who feast on fish do not come near the sea. Larger animals that prey on birds also do not come here. Because the Dead Sea environment is so harsh for animals and any fish that accidently come here from the streams, die- thus it is known as the Dead Sea!
How was Dead Sea formed?
The Dead Sea is almost 3 million years old! At that time a rift formed between two tectonic plates that spread apart. This made the earth crust to spread apart and to become thinner and thinner. This created a rift valley and the Dead Sea was created right along this valley. Where the earth’s surface became thin that part sunk downwards and is still sinking, almost 13 inches per year!
3 Interesting Dead Sea Facts
- You can actually float on the Dead Sea like a cork floats on water. This is because of its heavy salt content that makes the water so dense. It is deadly because if one is swimming face down it will be difficult for one to use their feet and roll over, making one drown. Another reason to name it Dead Sea?
- The Dead Sea salt is extremely bitter in taste
- The Dead Sea Salt is filled with minerals like calcium, iodine, saline, potassium and bromide- all which are found in a human body.