Mono Lake with the eastern Sierra Nevada range as background, deceptively desolate and barren, is actually teeming with life and intricately connected to California’s water politics. This salty, alkaline lake depends on fresh water run-off to maintain its level and ecological balance. The lake level which had fallen to 6372 feet in 1982, far below its pre-diversion level of 6417 feet, is now at 6381 feet. A 1994 court decision against the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power has set the lake level to 6392 feet. This increase has allowed the California gull and 300 other bird species to nest without fear of predators crossing the lake to their nests.
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