On July 22, Dr. Yolanda León of Grupo Jaragua described for Diario Libre how this lagoon varies in size depending on the rainy seasons, storms, etc. «In this sense, we must remember that we are going through an intense period of drought at the national level, after a below-normal rainy season. Likewise, during the 2015 drought, when we suffered from a very severe El Niño phenomenon, the lagoon was substantially reduced. In this year, during May and June we were victims in addition to very high temperatures caused by a high incidence of the Sahara air layer in the Caribbean, which could have further accelerated the high evaporation of its waters these months, which is already high,» he said
Last July 12, it had only 1% of the 28 km2 area it had in 1967. While searching for answers, social media was inundated with heartbreaking images of the lagoon situation and uncertainty about the future of this lagoon.
On July 30, Storm Isaiah arrived in the country, bringing with it a significant amount of water that would be reflected, a few days later, in the recovery of the waters of the lagoon that benefits mainly from the South Yaque River. Two months later, on September 22, Storm Laura would touch Dominican soil, bringing more rains to much of the country.
This does not mean that the lagoon is out of danger. Longer droughts and sedimentation will always remain a threat to this important body of water, a wildlife refuge.In the following satellite sequence, provided by Dr. Yolanda León, the near-dry lagoon can be seen last July 22. In the next you can notice the significant increase in water volume on August 6, after Storm Isaiah, and finally the near-complete recovery of its average area on September 5, after the passage of Storm Laura and subsequent rains.