Roughly parallel with Langano, but on the western side of the main north-south road, is Lake Abijjata – justly the most famous in its bird life of all the Rift Valley lakes. This is a shallow lake, only ten meters deep, lying in a gracefully curved basin of land set amidst low hills. Its alkaline waters attract flamingos in their thousands.
Thousands of flamingos create pink carpets in the blue bays of the lake; great white pelicans soar in from Lake Shalla to enjoy the fishing and execute their fantastic ballet; pied kingfishers hover and dive; fish eagles protect their territory with their eerie cry; cormorants and darters fill the dead acacia trees silhouetting strange and beautiful shapes against the sunset. Here are tall marabous, sacred ibis, dwell sometimes in the hundreds of thousands, snipe, stilt, avocet, and the black heron searching the shallow water in the shadow created by his black umbrella.