This only accounts for about 10% of the lake's water balance.Evapotranspiration, caused by strong winds and intense sunlight at high altitude, balances the remaining 90% of the water loss. Since 2000 Lake Titicaca has experienced constantly receding water levels.In Peru, these smaller and larger parts are referred to as Lago Pequeño and Lago Grande, respectively.The lake holds large populations of water birds and was designated as a Ramsar Site on August 26, 1998.Although this refers to navigation by large boats, it is generally considered to mean commercial craft.For many years the largest vessel afloat on the lake was the 2,200-ton, 79-metre (259 ft) SS Ollanta.Between April and November 2009 alone the water level dropped by 81 cm (32 in), reaching the lowest level since 1949.
Given the lack of a common name for Lake Titicaca in the sixteenth century, it is argued that the Spaniards used the name of the site of the most important indigenous shrine in the region, thakhsi cala on the Island of the Sun, as the name for the lake.
This phrase refers to the sacred carved rock found on the Island of the Sun.
In addition to names including the term titi and/or caca, Lake Titicaca was also known as Chuquivitu in the sixteenth century.
Totora reeds grow in water shallower than 3 m (9.8 ft), less frequently to 5.5 m (18 ft), but macrophytes, notably Chara and Potamogeton, occur down to 10 m (33 ft).
created by strike-slip movement along regional faults starting in the late Oligocene and ending in the late Miocene.