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Encyclopedia > Mekong
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Mekong (Mae Nam Khong)
Láncāng Jiāng, Mae Khaung, Mènam Khong, Mékôngk, Tonle Thom, Sông Cửu Long
View of the Mekong before sunset.
Countries China, Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam
Length 4,350 km (2,700 mi)
Watershed 795,000 km² (307,000 sq mi)
Discharge at South China Sea
 - average 16,000 /s (570,000 cu ft/s)
 - maximum 39,000 /s (1,380,000 cu ft/s)
Source Lasagongma Spring
 - location Mt. Guozongmucha, Qinghai, China
 - coordinates 33°42′31″N 94°41′44″E / 33.70861, 94.69556
 - elevation 5,224 m (17,139 ft)
Mouth Mekong Delta
 - elevation m (0 ft)

The Mekong is one of the world’s major rivers. It is the 12th-longest river in the world, and 7th longest in Asia. (discharging 475 km³/114 cu mi of water annually). Its estimated length is 4,350 km (2,703 mi), and it drains an area of 795,000 km² (307,000 sq mi).[1] From the Tibetan Plateau it runs through China's Yunnan province, Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. All except China and Burma belong to the Mekong River Commission. A south Asian regional association, Mekong-Ganga Cooperation is named after this river. The extreme seasonal variations in flow and the presence of rapids and waterfalls have made navigation extremely difficult. Image File history File links Zhongwen. ... The UTF-8-encoded Japanese Wikipedia article for mojibake, as displayed in ISO-8859-1 encoding. ... Japanese name Kanji: Hiragana: Korean name Hangul: Hanja: Vietnamese name Quốc ngữ: Hán tá»±: A Chinese character or Han character (simplified Chinese: ; traditional Chinese: ; pinyin: ) is a logogram used in writing Chinese, Japanese, rarely Korean, and formerly Vietnamese. ... View of the Mekong before the sunset. ... “km” redirects here. ... “Miles” redirects here. ... Square kilometre (U.S. spelling: square kilometer), symbol km², is a decimal multiple of SI unit of surface area square metre, one of the SI derived units. ... A square mile is an English unit of area equal to that of a square with sides each 1 statute mile (≈1,609 m) in length. ... Filipino name Tagalog: Timog Dagat Tsina (Dagat Luzon for the portion within Philippine waters) Malay name Malay: Laut China Selatan Portuguese name Portuguese: Mar da China Meridional Vietnamese name Vietnamese: The South China Sea is a marginal sea south of China. ... The cubic meter (symbol m³) is the SI derived unit of volume. ... This article is about the unit of time. ... It has been suggested that Thousand Cubic Feet be merged into this article or section. ... This article is about the unit of time. ... The cubic meter (symbol m³) is the SI derived unit of volume. ... This article is about the unit of time. ... It has been suggested that Thousand Cubic Feet be merged into this article or section. ... This article is about the unit of time. ... Qinghai (Chinese: 青海; Hanyu Pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Ching-hai; Postal System Pinyin: Tsinghai; Tibetan: མཚོ་སྔོན་ mtsho-sngon; Mongolian: Köke Naγur; Manchu: Huhu Noor) is a province of the Peoples Republic of China, named after the enormous Qinghai Lake. ... This article is about the unit of length. ... A foot (plural: feet or foot;[1] symbol or abbreviation: ft or, sometimes, ′ – a prime) is a unit of length, in a number of different systems, including English units, Imperial units, and United States customary units. ... Mekong River Delta from space, February 1996 Mekong Delta, February 2005. ... This article is about the unit of length. ... A foot (plural: feet or foot;[1] symbol or abbreviation: ft or, sometimes, ′ – a prime) is a unit of length, in a number of different systems, including English units, Imperial units, and United States customary units. ... Image File history File links Mekong_River_watershed. ... For other uses, see River (disambiguation). ... A cubic kilometre (symbol km³) is an SI derived unit of volume. ... A cubic mile is an Imperial unit/U.S. customary unit (non-SI non-metric) of volume, used in the United States. ... Tibet Autonomous Region, Qinghai Province and Sichuan Province of China lie on the Tibetan Plateau. ... Yunan redirects here. ... The Mekong River Commission (MRC) is an intergovernment body charged to promote and co-ordinate sustainable management and development of water and related resources for the countries mutual benefit and the peoples well-being by implementing strategic programmes and activities and providing scientific information and policy advice. ... Mekong-Ganga Cooperation (MGC) was established on November 10, 2000 at Vientiane in the First MGC Ministerial Meeting. ... For other uses, see Rapid (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Waterfall (disambiguation). ... This article is about determination of position and direction on or above the surface of the earth. ...

Contents

Names

The river was originally named by the local Thai peoples as Mae Nam Khong, Mae Khong for short, meaning Kong River or "Mother of all rivers". This was picked up and phoneticized in the Chinese as Méigōng Hé (湄公河) for the external part, without realizing it became the "River Kong River", the same redundancy as in English. In Tibetan "རྫ་ཆུ་"In China for most of its length it is known as the "Lancang River" (澜沧江, Láncāng Jiāng). In Burmese, it is called the Mae Khaung, while in Thai it is Mae Nam Khong (แม่น้ำโขง), in Laotian (ແມ່ນ້ຳຂອງ) Mènam Khong, in Cambodian Mékôngk or Tonle Thom and in Vietnamese Sông Cửu Long. In Thai, Kong (Thai: โขง) is a species of crocodile; some believe this is tone-shifted from (Thai: คค) Kod, or (Thai: โค้ง) kong, both adjectives to describe curves or meanders of a river or road.[2]IN BEIJING CHINA LOCATED IS MEKONG RIVER. Lao (ພາສາລາວ phaasaa laao) is the official language of Laos. ... Khmer is one of the main Austroasiatic languages, and has had considerable influence from Sanskrit and Pali. ...


Course

The Mekong at Luang Prabang , Laos
The Mekong at Luang Prabang , Laos
The Mekong in southern Laos.
The Mekong in southern Laos.
Mekong River Delta from space, February 1996 (south is at the top)

The river's source, and therefore its exact length, is uncertain, due to the existence of several tributaries in an inaccessible environment. According to the China Science Exploration Association survey, the source is the Lasagongma spring, at an altitude of 5,224 metres (17,139 ft).[3] This spring is located on Mount Guozongmucha, and forms the Zayaqu, which has been identified by the Chinese Academy of Sciences as the headwaters of the Mekong, within northwestern China's Qinghai Province. An earlier expedition by Michel Piessel had identified the Zanaqu as the headwaters, at the Rupsa-La pass (further west, at an altitude of 4,975 m/16,322 ft).[4] As a consequence of the difficulty in determining the location of the headwaters, figures for the Mekong's total length vary from 4,350 km (2,703 mi) to 4,909 km (3,050 mi). Royal palace museum of Luang Prabang. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 800 × 526 pixel Image in higher resolution (1739 × 1143 pixel, file size: 480 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Mekong ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 800 × 526 pixel Image in higher resolution (1739 × 1143 pixel, file size: 480 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Mekong ... Download high resolution version (639x639, 109 KB)Mekong River Delta, Vietnam - February 1996 image description here File links The following pages link to this file: Mekong Mekong Delta Categories: NASA images ... Download high resolution version (639x639, 109 KB)Mekong River Delta, Vietnam - February 1996 image description here File links The following pages link to this file: Mekong Mekong Delta Categories: NASA images ... Look up tributary in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Qinghai (Chinese: 青海; Hanyu Pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Ching-hai; Postal System Pinyin: Tsinghai; Tibetan: མཚོ་སྔོན་ mtsho-sngon; Mongolian: Köke Naγur; Manchu: Huhu Noor) is a province of the Peoples Republic of China, named after the enormous Qinghai Lake. ...


Approximately half the river's length is in China, where it is called the Dza Chu in Tibetan in its upper course in Tibet (Chinese: 扎曲; pinyin: Zá Qū), and more generally the Lancang in Chinese (simplified Chinese: 澜沧江; traditional Chinese: 瀾滄江; pinyin: Láncāng Jiāng), meaning the "turbulent river". Much of this stretch consists of deep gorges, and the river leaves China at an altitude of only 500 metres (1,640 ft). The entire river is known as the Meigong in Chinese (Chinese: 湄公河; pinyin: Méigōng Hé). Pinyin, more formally called Hanyu Pinyin (Simplified Chinese: ; Traditional Chinese: ; Pinyin: ), is the most common variant of Standard Mandarin romanization system in use. ... Simplified Chinese character (Simplified Chinese: or ; traditional Chinese: or ; pinyin: or ) is one of two standard sets of Chinese characters of the contemporary Chinese written language. ... Traditional Chinese characters refers to one of two standard sets of printed Chinese characters. ... Pinyin, more formally called Hanyu Pinyin (Simplified Chinese: ; Traditional Chinese: ; Pinyin: ), is the most common variant of Standard Mandarin romanization system in use. ... A gorge is a narrow passage between steep mountains or hills. ... Pinyin, more formally called Hanyu Pinyin (Simplified Chinese: ; Traditional Chinese: ; Pinyin: ), is the most common variant of Standard Mandarin romanization system in use. ...


The river next forms the border between Burma and Laos for 200 kilometres (120 mi), at the end of which it meets the tributary Ruak River at the Golden Triangle. This point also marks the division between the Upper and Lower Mekong. Look up tributary in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... The Golden Triangle or Sop Ruak in Amphoe Chiang Saen The Ruak River (Thai: ) is a river at the Thai-Myanmar border. ... The Golden Triangle is one of Asia’s two main illicit opium-producing areas. ...

The Mekong near the Golden Triangle
The Mekong near the Golden Triangle

The river then divides Laos and Thailand, before a stretch passing through Laos alone. It is known as Maè Nam Khong (Mother of all rivers) in both Lao and Thai (แม่น้ำโขง). The Lao stretch is characterised by gorges, rapids and depths of as little as half a meter in the dry season. It widens south of Luang Prabang, where it has been known to flood to 4 km (2 mi) in width and reach 100 metres (300 ft) in depth, although its course remains extremely inconsistent. The endangered Giant Mekong Catfish was traditionally caught in this region once yearly, following auspicious rites officiated by the quondam royal family. Image File history File linksMetadata No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File linksMetadata No higher resolution available. ... For other uses, see Rapid (disambiguation). ... Royal palace museum of Luang Prabang. ... Binomial name Pangasius gigas Chevey, 1931 The Giant Mekong Catfish (Pangasius gigas (Chevey 1931), formerly Pangasianodon, also known as Pangasius paucidens (Fang & Chaux 1949)) is one of the largest (by weight) freshwater fish in the world. ...


The river again marks the Lao-Thai border in the stretch which passes Vientiane, followed by a short stretch through Laos alone. This includes the Si Phan Don (four thousand islands) region above the Khone Falls near the Cambodian border, where endangered dolphins can be viewed. The falls are all but impassable to river traffic. This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... The Si Phan Don (meaning 4,000 islands) is a region of Champasak Province in southern Laos. ... The Khone Falls is a waterfall on the Mekong River in Laos in the Ban Hang Khone province near its border with Cambodia. ...


In Cambodia, the river is called the Mékôngk or Tonle Thom (great river). The Sambor rapids above Kratie are the last to impede navigation. Just above Phnom Penh is the confluence with the Tonle Sap, the main Cambodian tributary. Below Phnom Penh, it divides into the Bassac and the Mekong proper, which both flow into the Mekong Delta in Vietnam. Categories: Southeast Asia geography stubs | Provinces of Cambodia ... Nickname: Location of Phnom Penh, Cambodia Coordinates: , Country Province Settled 1372 Became Capital 1865 Government  - Type Municipality  - Mayor & Governor H.E. Keb Chutema (Khmer: )  - Vice Governors H.E. Than Sina, H.E. Map Sarin, H.E. Seng Tong Area  - Total 376 km² (145. ... NASA satellite image of the Tonle Sap (the Great Lake) The Tonlé Sap (meaning Large Fresh Water River but more commonly translated as Great Lake) is a combined lake and river system of huge importance to Cambodia. ... Bassac River (commonly called Tonle Bassac) is a distributary of the Mekong River. ... Mekong River Delta from space, February 1996 Mekong Delta, February 2005. ...


In Vietnamese, the river as a whole is known as Mê Kông. The part flowing through Vietnam, known as Sông Cửu Long (river of nine dragons), divides into two major branches, the Tiền Giang (Front River) and Hậu Giang (Back River). These in turn enter the sea through nine estuaries, thus the Vietnamese name.


About 90 million people rely on the river. The area they live in, known as the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS), comprises Yunnan and Guangxi Provinces in China, Burma, Lao PDR, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam.[5] The main livelihood of the people of the GMS is rice production. Approximately 140,000 km² (54,000 sq mi) of rice are grown in the GMS.[6] A huge number of rice varieties are grown along the Mekong. Of approximately 100,000 rice accessions in the Rice Gene Bank of the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), about 40,000 come from the GMS.[7] The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) is an international NGO. Its heaquarters are in Los Baños, Laguna, Philippines, and it has offices in ten countries. ...


Tributaries

Mekong and its tributaries.

The following tributaries flow into the Mekong River. The country names following the names of the tributaries indicate the country at which the tributary joins the Mekong. Image File history File links Size of this preview: 638 × 599 pixelsFull resolution‎ (640 × 601 pixels, file size: 143 KB, MIME type: image/png) File historyClick on a date/time to view the file as it appeared at that time. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 638 × 599 pixelsFull resolution‎ (640 × 601 pixels, file size: 143 KB, MIME type: image/png) File historyClick on a date/time to view the file as it appeared at that time. ...

  • Ing River (Thailand)
  • Ruak River (Thailand)
  • Mun River (Thailand)
  • Kok River (Thailand)
  • Lam Ta Klong River (Laos/Thailand)
  • Nam Ou (Laos)
  • Nam Ngum (Laos)
  • Sebanghiang (Laos)
  • Sekon River (Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam)
  • Sesan River (Cambodia)
  • Srepok River (Cambodia-Vietnam)
    • Krong No River (Vietnam)
    • Krong Ana River (Vietnam)
    • Ea H'leo River (Cambodia)
  • Tonlé Sap River (Cambodia)

The Ing River is a tributary of the Mekong River in the northern part of Thailand. ... The Golden Triangle or Sop Ruak in Amphoe Chiang Saen The Ruak River (Thai: ) is a river at the Thai-Myanmar border. ... The Mun River (Thai แม่น้ำมูล) is a tributary of the Mekong river. ... The Chi River (Template:Lang-thai-lao) is the longest river in Laos and Thailand at 765 km, although it carries less water than the second longest river, the Mun. ... The Dom Noi River that stopped by Sirindhorn Dam The Dom Noi River (Thai ลำโดมน้อย, Lam Dom Noi) is a tributary of the Mun River, originates in the Dongrek mountains and flows northwards. ... The Kok River (Thai แม่น้ำกก) originates in Shan State, Myanmar. ... The Lam Ta Klong is a river in Thailand and Laos. ... The Nam Ou (rice bowl river) is one of the most important rivers of Laos. ... Location of Srepok river. ... NASA satellite image of the Tonle Sap (the Great Lake) The Tonlé Sap (meaning Large Fresh Water River but more commonly translated as Great Lake) is a combined lake and river system of huge importance to Cambodia. ...

Distributaries

Mekong has five main distributaries including: distributary in Else and Hase at Melle A seasonal Distributary of the Kaveri river on the Kaveri delta, near Nannilam, India. ...

  • Bassac River (called Hau River in Vietnam),
  • My Tho River,
  • Ham Luong River,
  • Co Chien River, and
  • Ba Lai rivers.

This system of distributaries of Mekong is often called Cuu Long River in Vietnam. Bassac River (commonly called Tonle Bassac) is a distributary of the Mekong River. ...


Fauna

The biodiversity of the Mekong mountains is one of the richest in the world. More than 1200 species of fish have been identified and there could be possibly as many as 1700. Fishing is a very important part of the economic activities in the area and a vital source of protein in the local diet. Estimates indicate that some 120 fish species are commercially traded but most of the fishery is based on 10-20 species. [8]


In the Upper Mekong, the northern part of the river down to the Burma-Thai-Laos boarder, the river is relatively clear and fast flowing with the influx snowmelt guaranteeing a relatively uniform circumannual flow in the river. The water tends to be neutral, with a pH of 6.9 ranging to 8.2 and the nutrient level is low. In the Lower Mekong area the river is turbid , especially during the rainy season. Due to bank erosion the water gets a rusty-tan colour from the soil. The river temperature in the Lower Mekong varies between 21.1°C to 27.8°C and the pH fluctuates between 6.2 to 6.5. The two main biotopic areas in the river follow the division between the Upper and Lower Mekong. The fish in the fast-flowing upper reaches are dominated by different loaches (Cobitidae), sucker catfish (Sisoridae), hillstream loach (Homalopteridae) and carp (Garrinae). The slower middle and lower parts of the river are dominated by species of carp (Cyprinidae), catfish (Siluridae, Clariidae, Schilbeidae, Bagridae, Sisoridae and Akysidae) and murrels (Chanidae and Ophicephalidae). Loaches are freshwater fishes of the family Cobitidae, small bottom-dwelling fishes with a flattened ventral profile. ... Genera Sucker catfishes or sisorid catfishes (Sisoridae) are a family of catfishes. ... Genera (many, see text) The family Cyprinidae, named after the Greek word for goldfish, consists of the carps and minnows. ... Genera Freshwater catfishes or sheatfishes (Siluridae) are a family of catfishes. ... Genera Allabenchelys Channallabes Clariallabes Clarias Dinotopteroides Dinotopterus Dolichallabes Encheloclarias Gymnallabes Heterobranchus Horaglanis Platyallabes Platyclarias Tanganikallabes Uegitglanis Xenoclarias Xenoglanis Airbreathing catfishes are fishes comprising the family Clariidae. ... Genera The schilbid catfishes or Schilbeidae are a family of catfishes native to Africa, South and Southeast Asia. ... Genera Bagrichthys Bagroides Bagrus Batasio Eomacrones â€  Gobibagrus â€  Hemibagrus Hemileiocassis Hyalobagrus Leiocassis Mystus Nanobagrus Neotropius Nigerium â€  Nkondobagrus â€  Olyra Pelteobagrus Pseudobagrus Pseudomystus Rama Rita Sperata Bagridae are a family of catfish that originate from Africa and Asia from Japan to Borneo. ... Genera Sucker catfishes or sisorid catfishes (Sisoridae) are a family of catfishes. ... Genera Acrochordonichthys Akysis Breitensteinia The stream catfishes are a family Akysidae of catfishes found in the fresh waters of southeast Asia. ... Binomial name Chanos chanos (Forsskål, 1775) The milkfish (Chanos chanos) is an important food fish in Southeast Asia. ...


No other river is home to so many species of very large fish. The biggest include the Giant River Carp (Probarbus jullieni), which can grow up to 150 cm and weigh 70kg, the Giant pangasius (Pangasius sanitwongsei), Siamese giant carp (Catlocarpio siamensis) and the endemic Mekong Giant Catfish (Pangasianodon gigas), all three of which can grow up to about 300 cm in length and weigh 300 kg. All of these are in serious decline, both because of dams and flood control and overfishing.[9] Binomial name Sauvage, 1880 The Julliens Golden Carp, Seven-striped Barb, Barbeau De Jullien, or Carpilla Ikan Temoleh (Probarbus jullieni) is a species of ray-finned fish in the Cyprinidae family. ... Binomial name Pangasius sanitwongsei Smith, 1931 The giant pangasius or Chao Phraya giant catfish (Pangasius sanitwongsei) is a species of freshwater fish in the shark catfish family (family Pangasiidae) of order Siluriformes, found in the Chao Phraya and Mekong basins. ... Binomial name Catlocarpio siamensis (Boulenger, 1898) The Giant Barb or Siamese Giant Carp is the largest species of carp in the world. ... Endemic, in a broad sense, can mean belonging or native to, characteristic of, or prevalent in a particular geography, race, field, area, or environment; Native to an area or scope. ... Binomial name Pangasianodon gigas Chevey, 1931 The Mekong giant catfish, Pangasianodon gigas, is a species of freshwater fish in the shark catfish family (family Pangasiidae) of order Siluriformes, native to the Mekong basin in Southeast Asia. ...


One species of freshwater dolphin, the Irrawaddy dolphin (Orcaella brevirostris), was once common in the whole of the Lower Mekong but is now very rare.[10] Families See text River dolphins are four species of dolphin which reside in freshwater rivers and estuarys. ... Binomial name Orcaella brevirostris Gray, 1866 Irrawaddy Dolphin range The Irrawaddy Dolphin (Orcaella brevirostris) is a species of dolphin found near coasts and in estuaries in parts of south-east Asia. ...


Among other wetland mammals that have been living in and around the river are the Smooth-coated otter (Lutra perspicillata) and fishing cat (Felis viverrina). Binomial name Lutrogale perspicillata (Geoffroy, 1826) The Smooth-coated Otter (Lutrogale perspicillata) is a species of otter, the only extant representative of the genus Lutrogale. ... Binomial name Prionailurus viverrinus or Felis viverrina (Bennett, 1833) The Fishing Cat (Prionailurus viverrinus or Felis viverrina) is a medium-sized cat of Asia. ...


The endangered Siamese crocodile (Crocodylus siamensis) is reported to occur along the Mekong but is very rare.


History

A map of 1715, incorrectly showing the Chao Praya river as a branch of the Mekong
A map of 1715, incorrectly showing the Chao Praya river as a branch of the Mekong
The members of the French Mekong Expedition of 1866
The members of the French Mekong Expedition of 1866

The difficulty of navigating the river has meant that it has divided, rather than united, the people who live near it. The earliest known settlements date to 2100 BCE, with Ban Chiang being an excellent example of that early Iron Age culture. The earliest recorded civilisation was the 1st century Indianised-Khmer culture of Funan, in the Mekong Delta. Excavations at Oc Eo, near modern An Giang, have found coins from as far away as the Roman Empire. This was succeeded by the Khmer culture Chenla state by around the 5th century. The Khmer empire of Angkor was the last great Indianized state in the region. From around the time of the fall of the Khmer empire, the Mekong was the frontline between the emergent states of Siam and Tonkin (North Vietnam), with Laos and Cambodia, then situated on the coast, torn between their influence. Download high resolution version (500x700, 53 KB)Scan by User:Markalexander100 of 1715 map in Description de lunivers, incorrectly showing the Chao Praya river as a branch of the Mekong. ... Download high resolution version (500x700, 53 KB)Scan by User:Markalexander100 of 1715 map in Description de lunivers, incorrectly showing the Chao Praya river as a branch of the Mekong. ... Download high resolution version (1000x500, 86 KB) This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Download high resolution version (1000x500, 86 KB) This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Ban Chiang (Thai บ้านเชียง) is an archeological site located in the Udon Thani province, Thailand, at 17°32′55″N, 103°21′30″E. It is listed in the UNESCO world heritage list since 1992. ... Funan (Old Khmer Bnam, Modern Khmer Phnom (i. ... Categories: Possible copyright violations ... An Giang   (written identically in both English and Vietnamese) is a province of Vietnam. ... For other uses, see Roman Empire (disambiguation). ... The Khmer people are the predominant ethnic group in Cambodia, accounting for approximately 90% of the 13. ... Chenla, known from Chinese records as Zhenla (真腊), was an early Khmer kingdom. ... Map of Asia and Europe c. ... Map of the Angkor region in Cambodia. ... For the country formerly called Siam see Thailand SIAM is an acronym for Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics. ...


The first European to encounter the Mekong was the Portuguese Antonio de Faria in 1540; a European map of 1563 depicts the river, although even by then little was known of the river upstream of the delta. European interest was sporadic: the Spaniards and Portuguese mounted some missionary and trade expeditions, while the Dutch Gerrit van Wuysthoff led an expedition up the river as far as Vientiane in 1641-42. For other uses, see Europe (disambiguation). ...


The French took a serious interest in the region in the mid-19th century, capturing Saigon, from Vietnamese invaders, in 1861, and establishing a protectorate over Cambodia in 1863. Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnamese: Thành Chí Minh) is the largest city in Vietnam, located near the delta of the Mekong River. ...


The first systematic exploration began with the French Mekong Expedition led by Ernest Doudard de Lagrée and Francis Garnier, which ascended the river from its mouth to Yunnan between 1866 to 1868. Their chief finding was that the Mekong had too many falls and rapids to ever be useful for navigation. The river's source was located by Pyotr Kuzmich Kozlov in 1900. Ernest Doudart de Lagrée, from Voyage dexploration en Indo-Chine Ernest Marc Louis de Gonzague Doudart de Lagrée (March 31, 1823 - March 12, 1868) was the leader of the French Mekong Expedition of 1866-1868. ... Francis Garnier on a 1943 stamp of Indochina Marie Joseph François (Francis) Garnier (25 July 1839 - 21 December 1873) was a French officer and explorer known for his exploration of the Mekong River in Southeast Asia. ... Yunan redirects here. ... This article is about determination of position and direction on or above the surface of the earth. ... Pyotr Kuzmich Kozlov (October 3, 1863 near Smolensk - September 26, 1935, Peterhof) was a Russian explorer who continued the studies of Nikolai Mikhailovich Przhevalskiy in Mongolia and Tibet. ...


From 1893, the French extended their control of the river into Laos, establishing French Indochina by the first decade of the 20th century. This lasted until the First and Second Indochina Wars ended French and American involvement in the region. Flag Capital Hanoi Language(s) French Political structure Federation Historical era New Imperialism  - Addition of Laos 1893, 1887  - Vietnamese Declaration of Independence September 2, 1945  - Independence of Laos July 19, 1949  - Independence of Cambodia November 9, 1953  - Recognized Independence of Vietnam 1954, 1954 Area  - 1945 750,000 km² Currency French... Combatants French Union France State of Vietnam Cambodia Laos Viet Minh Commanders French Expeditionary Corps Philippe Leclerc de Hauteclocque (1945-46) Jean-Étienne Valluy (1946-8) Roger Blaizot (1948-9) Marcel-Maurice Carpentier (1949-50) Jean de Lattre de Tassigny (1950-51) Raoul Salan (1952-3) Henri Navarre (1953-4... Combatants Republic of Vietnam United States Republic of Korea Thailand Australia New Zealand The Philippines National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam Democratic Republic of Vietnam People’s Republic of China Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea Strength US 1,000,000 South Korea 300,000 Australia 48,000...


After the Vietnam War, the tensions between the U.S.-backed Thai government and the new Communist governments in the other countries prevented cooperation on use of the river. This article is about the form of society and political movement. ...


Bridges

The Thai–Lao Friendship Bridge (Thai: สะพาน มิตรภาพ ไทย-ลาว Saphan Mittaphap Thai-Lao) connects Nong Khai city with Vientiane in Laos. The 1170-metre-long bridge has two 3.5 m-wide lanes with an unfinished single railway line in the middle. On March 20, 2004 the Thai and Lao governments agreed to extend the railway to Tha Nalaeng in Laos The Thai–Lao Friendship Bridge (Thai Saphan Mittaphap Thai-Lao) is a bridge over the river Mekong, connecting the provinces of Nong Khai (city of Nong Khai) in Thailand and Vientiane in Laos. ... Nong Khai (หนองคาย) is a city in North-East Thailand, capital of the Nong Khai province. ...


The Second Thai–Lao Friendship Bridge connects Mukdahan to Savannakhet. The two-lane, 12-metre-wide, 1600-metre-long bridge opened to the general public on January 9, 2007. The Second Thai–Lao Friendship Bridge over the Mekong connects Mukhadan province in Thailand with Savannakhet in Laos. ... Mukdahan (Thai: มุกดาหาร) is the capital of Mukdahan province, Thailand, located in the north-east of the country on the banks of the river Mekong. ... Savannakhét (Lao ສະຫວັນນະເຂດ) is a province of Laos, located in the south of the country. ...


There is also a third bridge, located in Champasak province, in Laos. Unlike the Friendship bridges, this bridge is not a border crossing. It is 1,380 metres (4,528 ft) long, and was completed in 2000 (Pakxe bridge 15°6′19.95″N, 105°48′49.51″E). Pakxe (French Paksé) is a city in southern Laos, situated at the confluence of the Xedone and Mekong Rivers. ...


Cambodia has one two-lane bridge located near the city of Kompong Cham, on the road linking Phnom Penh with the remote provinces of Rattanakiri and Mondolkiri, and further away Laos.


Dams

China Western Development[11] China Western Development (西部大开发 Pinyin: Xībù Dàkāifā), also Chinas Western Development or Western China Development, is a policy adopted by the Peoples Republic of China to boost its underdeveloped western regions. ...

Mekong Dams compl. MW Geo coordinate
Gongguoqiao Dam 2008 750

25°36′43.7″N, 99°17′45.6″E

Xiaowan Dam 2013 4200

24°42′19.1″N, 100°5′31.8″E

Manwan Dam 1996 1500

24°37′20.2″N, 100°26′56.4″E

Dachaoshan Dam 2003 1350

24°1′40.3″N, 100°22′9.8″E

Nuozhadu Dam 2017 5850
Jinghong Dam 2010 1750

21°50′48″N, 100°58′21.4″E

Ganlanba Dam n/a 150
Mengsong Dam n/a 600

Environmental concerns

Crossing the Mekong by ferry, near Champasak, Laos
Crossing the Mekong by ferry, near Champasak, Laos

The two most controversial current issues are the building of dams and the blasting of rapids. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1600x1200, 246 KB) Summary Photo by User:Adam Carr, January 2006 Licensing I, the creator of this work, hereby release it into the public domain. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1600x1200, 246 KB) Summary Photo by User:Adam Carr, January 2006 Licensing I, the creator of this work, hereby release it into the public domain. ... This article is about structures for water impoundment. ...


A number of dams have already been built on the river's tributaries, notably the Pak Mun dam in Thailand. This has been criticized on grounds of cost as well as damage to the environment and to the livelihoods of affected villagers, though none have been built on the main part itself. The Pak Mun dam is located 5. ...


China is engaged in an extensive program of dam-building on the river itself: it has already completed one at Manwan, a second is under construction at Dachaoshan, and another twelve are under consideration.


Poverty stricken Cambodia is one nation that is completely dependent on the river for food and the vast majority of its fledgling economy. The annual floods provide much needed water for crops of the otherwise dry dusty land, and to refresh Tonle Sap, yet its major cities are all vulnerable to flooding. The Mekong River Commission, a panel of the region's nations, has accused China of blatant disregard for the nations downstream in its plans to dam the river in an effort to stop the dams, but to no avail. Since the building of the first Chinese dam, many species have become endangered including the Mekong dolphin and manatee, water levels have dropped as ferries get stuck, fish caught are small and the catch is less than half of before the dam, the turnover at Chiang Rai port is less than 1/4 of previous years, and crossings from Chiang Rai to isolated Luang Prabang have lengthened from 8 hours to 2 days due to inadequate water levels. NASA satellite image of the Tonle Sap (the Great Lake) The Tonlé Sap (meaning Large Fresh Water River but more commonly translated as Great Lake) is a combined lake and river system of huge importance to Cambodia. ... The Mekong River Commission (MRC) is an intergovernment body charged to promote and co-ordinate sustainable management and development of water and related resources for the countries mutual benefit and the peoples well-being by implementing strategic programmes and activities and providing scientific information and policy advice. ... An endangered species is a species whose population is so small that it is in danger of becoming extinct. ... For other uses, see Dolphin (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Manatee (disambiguation). ... Nakhon Chiang Rai, showing the ancient city walls and more recent gates : Pratu Nang Ing (ประตูนางอิง) Pratu Chiang Mai (ประตูเชียงใหม่) Pratu Wai (ประตูหวาย) Pratu Pa Daeng (ประตูป่าแดัง) Pratu Pi (ประตูผี) Pratu Kha Tam (ประตูขะต๊ำ) Pratu Tha Nak (ประตูท่านาค) Pratu Tha Sai (ประตูท่าทราย) Pratu Tho (ประตูท่อ) Pratu Yang Soeng (ประตูยางเสิ้ง) Pratu Jao Chai (ประตูเจ้าชาย) Pratu Sri (ประตูสรี) Nakhon Chiang Rai (Thai เชียงราย; locally also... Royal palace museum of Luang Prabang. ...


Despite all these problems, new dams planned will have significantly worse impact if carried out as planned. All nations downstream and the environment will suffer from added pollution (due to development and relatively lax regulation and enforcement in China compared to Thailand, poisoning the food supply from pesticide runoff and heavy industry, as well as promoting algal blooms from organophosphates from agriculture, as well as water hyacinth infestation), river blockage problems as fish cannot swim upstream to spawn, and potentially devastating very low water flow. Air pollution Pollution is the introduction of pollutants (whether chemical substances, or energy such as noise, heat, or light) into the environment to such a point that its effects become harmful to human health, other living organisms, or the environment. ... For the band, see The Police. ... A cropduster spreading pesticide. ... Heavy industry does not have a single fixed meaning compared to light industry. ... A red tide resulting from a dinoflagellate bloom discoloring the water on the right An algal bloom is a relatively rapid increase in the population of (usually) phytoplankton algae in an aquatic system. ... An organophosphate (sometimes abbreviated OP) is the general name for esters of phosphoric acid and is one of the organophosphorus compounds. ... Species Seven species, including: - Anchored Water Hyacinth E. crassipes - Common Water Hyacinth - Variableleaf Water Hyacinth - Brazilian Water Hyacinth The seven species of water hyacinths comprise the genus Eichhornia of free-floating perennial aquatic plants native to tropical South America. ...


Other environmental concerns arise from increased water flow in some parts as well as China clears rocks and sandbars, blasts gorges, and slows water as it dams and floods other sections, and relocates indigenous peoples. Cambodia by far the most exposed, depending on a fine balance of water flow, fearing scenarios of mass famine and devastating floods, the likes of which destroyed the Angkor kingdom 700 years ago. Laos' biggest cities all hug the Mekong as does Vietnam's largest city and financial hub, Ho Chi Minh City, which would be vulnerable mostly to low flow and pollution. In the field of ecology, an indigenous species is an organism which is native to a region or ecosystem. ... <nowiki>Insert non-formatted text hereBold text</nowiki>A famine is a social and economic crisis that is commonly accompanied by widespread malnutrition, starvation, epidemic and increased mortality. ... Map of the Angkor region in Cambodia. ... Saigon redirects here. ...


Trivia

  • Balls of light are observable from time to time rising from the water's surface in the stretch of the river near Vientiane or Nong Khai. These are sometimes referred to as Naga fireballs. The locals attribute the phenomenon to Phaya Naga, Mekong Dragons.
  • According to researchers the river houses more species of giant fish than any world river[1], most notably the Giant Mekong Catfish.
  • The low tide level of the river in Cambodia is lower than the high tide level out at sea, and the flow of the Mekong inverts with the tides throughout its stretch in Vietnam and up to Phnom Penh. The very flat Mekong Delta area in Vietnam is thus prone to flooding, especially in the provinces of An Giang and Dong Thap (Đồng Tháp), near the Cambodian border.

Image File history File links Broom_icon. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... Nong Khai (หนองคาย) is a city in North-East Thailand, capital of the Nong Khai province. ... The Naga fireballs (Thai บั้งไฟพญานาค, bangfai payanak) are a phenomenon seen in Nong Khai province, Isan, Thailand and Laos, in which glowing balls rise from the Mekong river. ... Photograph circulated in Laos supposedly depicting a phaya naga captured in Laos by U.S. servicemen in 1968 The Phaya Naga or Naga are serpent-like creatures believed by locals to live in the Laotian stretch of the Mekong river. ... Binomial name Pangasius gigas Chevey, 1931 The Giant Mekong Catfish (Pangasius gigas (Chevey 1931), formerly Pangasianodon, also known as Pangasius paucidens (Fang & Chaux 1949)) is one of the largest (by weight) freshwater fish in the world. ... Mekong River Delta from space, February 1996 Mekong Delta, February 2005. ...

Footnotes

References

  • Milton Osborne. 1976. River Road to China: The Mekong River Expedition 1866-1873. George Allen & Unwin.
  • Milton Osborne. 2000. The Mekong, Turbulent Past, Uncertain Future Atlantic Monthly Press, New York. ISBN 0-87113-806-9
  • Edward A. Gargan. 2002. The River's Tale. First published by Alfred A. Knopf.
  • Fredenburg, P. and B. Hill. 2006. Sharing Rice for Peace and Prosperity in the Greater Mekong Subregion. Sid Harta Publishers, Victoria. ISBN 1-921206-08-X. pp271.

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
Image File history File links Commons-logo. ... Keyhole Markup Language (KML) is an XML-based language for describing three-dimensional geospatial data and its display in application programs. ... GeoTagging, sometimes referred to as Geocoding, is the process of adding geographical identification metadata to various media such as websites, RSS feeds, or images. ...

  Results from FactBites:
 
Mekong - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1568 words)
From around the time of the fall of the Khmer empire, the Mekong was the frontline between the emergent states of Siam and Tonkin (North Vietnam), with Laos and Cambodia, then situated on the coast, torn between their influence.
The first European to encounter the Mekong was the Portuguese Antonio de Faria in 1540; a European map of 1563 depicts the river, although even by then little was known of the river upstream of the delta.
The very flat Mekong Delta area in Vietnam is thus prone to flooding, especially in the provinces of An Giang and Dong Thap (Đồng Tháp), near the Cambodian border.
History of Giant Mekong Catfish (1477 words)
The fish is migratory, transboundary, and endemic to the Mekong River.
The Mekong giant catfish is one of the only Mekong species specifically mentioned in several international treaties and agreements, such as the IUCN Red List of Endangered Species and the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species.
This migration pattern is common among fish of the Cambodian Mekong and thus the protection of the migratory pathway may benefit an entire assemblage of migratory fish.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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