South of the Delta proper, Lake Razim is separated from the Black Sea by two long, tongue-like grinds. Like other parts of the Delta, Razim has been adversely affected by development: the western shores were reclaimed in 1969 for fish farming, and in 1974 a sluice at Gura Portiţei cut the lake off from the sea, causing it to fill with fresh water, which has led to frequent algal blooms, deoxygenation and a steady decline in fish yields and biodiversity. It’s still a good spot for birdwatchers, however, particularly in November and December, when the western shoreline is invaded by a million white-fronted and red-breasted geese from arctic Russia, which stay here and on Lake Sinoe just south until the reedbeds freeze. In the north of the lake, Popina island is now a closed reserve.

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