Bays formed by drowned river mouths provide ideal nursery habitat for many fish species. Allegedly, Babe Ruth’s first home run ball sunk just off Toronto Island, never to be seen again. It’s had a rough summer, but we still think Lake Ontario is worth celebrating. These freshwater estuaries also support abundant waterfowl and other wildlife. Do we live in a simulation? There are several islands that … Water temperatures reach a high of about 75 degrees Fahrenheit (24 degrees Celsius) in August to a low of about 37 F (3 C) in February. Facts about Lake Ontario 7: … The St. Lawrence River provides the lake's outlet to the Atlantic Ocean. All of the other lakes flow into it, giving it their pollution. In addition to shipwrecks, there are other scuba diving treasures to be found. Recreation and tourism are vital economic drivers, thanks to Niagara Falls and various state, provincial, and national parks. Lake Ontario is host to a number of migratory birds. 9. The main water inlet for Lake Ontario is the Niagara River, which is the main water outlet for Lake Erie. It is 48 square miles (124 square km). Today only recreational fishery activities exist. 18. Almost finished... We need to confirm your email address. For example, a U.S. Air Force C-45 aircraft, which was abandoned during flight, is located off Oswego, New York. Since Lake Ontario is the downstream Great Lake, it is impacted by human activities occurring throughout the Lake Superior, Michigan, Huron, and Erie basins. He’s still waiting. - Source 2. It serves as ... Facts about Lake Ontario 3: ecology. 10 Facts about Lake Ontario. Swans, loons, ducks, geese, grebes and other water fowl are among the wildlife that inhabit Lake Ontario. Non-native baitfish still dominate Lake Ontario’s offshore forage base. The last in the Great Lakes chain, Lake Ontario serves as the outlet to the Atlantic Ocean via the St. Lawrence River. It’s not cold enough to freeze over, though. 5. If that doesn’t make you think twice about peeing in the lake (or any lake) this might; all of the water for the Great Lakes flows through Lake Ontario last. 1. Recreational and charter anglers commonly seek non-native chinook salmon, coho salmon, steelhead, and brown trout, along with native lake trout and … Located in Prince Edward County, it’s the largest freshwater dune system on earth. Contact Us to ask a question, provide feedback, or report a problem. Lake Ontario is at an average of 283 feet above sea level. Lake Ontario holds about four times the water volume (1,640 cubic kilometers / 393 cubic miles) as Lake Erie, although it is similar in width and length. Lake Ontario has a “seiche”, a natural rhythmic motion as water sloshes back and forth every 11 minutes. With waters reaching up to half a metre higher than usual, flooding along the lakeshore has led to property damage, major event cancellations and even the closure of Toronto’s beloved Centre Island. Recreational and charter anglers commonly seek non-native chinook salmon, coho salmon, steelhead, and brown trout, along with native lake trout and Atlantic salmon. Lake Ontario contains the second least amount of water out of the five Great Lakes. Ontario, Canada’s most populous province, was named after the lake, and not vice versa. In July 2017, one beachgoer even discovered vintage beer bottles that may have been kept cool in the lake for around 30 years. Lake Ontario contains about 393 cubic miles of water. Water clarity has been increasing since the invasion of zebra and quagga mussels, but baitfish, trout, and salmon have been slowly declining since the early 1980s, years before invasive mussels took hold. 6. That might make you think twice about peeing in the lake. The lake wasn’t named for the province—the province was named for the lake. Lake Ontario is the smallest of all the Great Lakes, with a surface area of 7,340 square miles (18,960 square kilometers), but its waters run deep. The impact of the lake-effect snow can be felt as far as Syracuse, N.Y., which is one of the snowiest cities in the United States. Lake Ontario has the smallest commercial fishery of any Great Lake and accounts for only 1 percent of commercial landings in Great Lakes waters. Experts say that the “holy grail” of baseballs will likely never be found.). The drainage basin covers 64,030 square kilometers (24,720 square miles). Unfortunately overfishing by the commercial fishing industry in the 20th century led to the fish being named a “species at risk.”. Before construction of the Erie Canal, Welland Canal, and St. Lawrence Seaway, natural barriers such as river rapids and Niagara Falls prevented or restricted th… More Canadians live in the Lake Ontario watershed than any other watershed in the country. You may withdraw your consent at any time. Future US, Inc. 11 West 42nd Street, 15th Floor, 17. Brûlé is believed to have reached Lake Huron and Lake Ontario around 1615, according to the Canadian Museum of History. Depth wise it is holds fourth position among the Great Lakes with a recorded maximum depth of 802 feet/244 metres. 10. And they're both female. Receive news and offers from our other brands? Its primary inlet is the Niagara River from Lake Erie. The lake has a number of lagoons and baymouth bars, which are formations made of sand, mud or other debris that close off bay areas. Live Science is part of Future US Inc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. Receive mail from us on behalf of our trusted partners or sponsors? Being the farthest downstream, Lake Ontario was the first to be colonized by Atlantic Ocean invaders such as sea lamprey and alewife. © Copyright 2020 Michigan Sea Grant. The Niagara River carries nutrient-rich water from Lake Erie to the western end of Lake Ontario. Because of the lake’s depth and the warm weather that comes in from the southwest, Lake Ontario rarely freezes over; But an ice sheet covering between 10% and 90% of the lake area typically develops, depending on the severity of the winter. All Rights Reserved. Although it’s “great,” Lake Ontario only the 14th largest lake in the world. Walleye, Coho salmon and Chinook salmon and a number of trout varieties, including rainbow and steelhead, are some of the fish that swim the waters of Lake Ontario. Development on the U.S. side leans heavily toward agriculture, while the Canadian shore sports more industrial areas and urban centers like Toronto, Ontario’s largest city. Lake Ontario has the smallest commercial fishery of any Great Lake and accounts for only 1 percent of commercial landings in Great Lakes waters. As with all the Great Lakes, water levels change both within the year (owing to seasonal changes in water input) and among years (owing to longer term trends in precipitation). It is bounded on the north by Ontario (Can.) At its eastern end, Lake Ontario drains into the St. Lawrence River, which ferries Great Lakes freshwater to the Atlantic Ocean. In the 17th and early 18th centuries, the French built forts along the edges of the lake. Like the other Great Lakes, Lake Ontario used to have an important commercial fishery. The most populated city along Lake Ontario is Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Lake Ontario is the 14th largest lake in the world in terms of surface area. The average depth of Lake Ontario is 283 feet and the deepest part is 804 feet. Wetland loss and water quality are two of Lake Ontario’s environmental threats. The first documented European to reach the lake was Étienne Brûlé in 1615. © Before construction of the Erie Canal, Welland Canal, and St. Lawrence Seaway, natural barriers such as river rapids and Niagara Falls prevented or restricted the movement of both fish and boats into the upper Great Lakes. It also receives runoff from farms and businesses around it, according to the University of Wisconsin Sea Grant Institute. Canadian distance swimmer Marilyn Bell was the first person to swim across Lake Ontario in 1954. You will receive a verification email shortly. Lake Ontario is the 14th largest lake in the world in terms of surface area. Since Lake Ontario is the downstream Great Lake, it is impacted by human activities occurring throughout the Lake Superior, Michigan, Huron, and Erie basins. After French explorers … The name Lake Superior is derived by French word “ac supérieur” meaning the upper lake which generally refers to its positioning (north of Huron). NOAA Image Measurement of Depth of Water in Lake Ontario. The average depth of Lake Ontario is 283 feet and the deepest part is 804 feet. A few other populated cities along Lake Ontario are Rochester (New York, USA) and Hamilton (Ontario, Canada). The man water outlet for Lake Ontario is the Saint Lawrence River, which leads to the Atlantic Ocean. “Ontario” comes from an indigenous word and may mean “great lake,” “lake of shining waters,” “beautiful lake,” or “sparkling waters.” Whatever the true etymology might be, the description is astute. Due to its location, Lake Ontario is host to a number of migratory birds. Major cities (over 100,000 people) along Lake Ontario include Toronto [photo below], Mississauga, Hamilton, Burlington, Kingston and Whitby on the Canadian side, and Rochester, New York on the US side. It used to be one of the most common fish in the lake but is now endangered. A red-necked grebe calls to its mate as it sits on its nest in Lake Ontario. A ferry from Kingston, on Lake Ontario's eastern end, to Wolfe Island. In the Wyandot (Huron) language, ontarío means “Lake of Shining Waters”. When its islands are included, the lake has a shoreline that is 1,146 kilometers (712 miles) long. Copyright © 2020 Facts Just for Kids. Please deactivate your ad blocker in order to see our subscription offer.