As there are piles of Hyacinths surfaces when Taun Thaman Lake water level recedes, boats are unable to pass through and has become a barrier for boats and oarsmen.
Since last year, Hyacinths grew rampantly in the lake and more of the overgrowth have showed itself when the water level started to recede. It’s now covering half of the lake’s area. Therefore, clearing works has to be done daily in order for transports across the lake to be regular.
“As there are too many Hyacinths growing in Taun Thaman Lake, it is difficult to row boats. As the Hyacinths piles are moved along with the wind and water, it is also blocking the waterway. Last year, Mandalay municipal had to clear piles of Hyacinths in Taun Thaman Lake. If the Municipal will help us again, it will be cleared within a short time as they have access to heavy machinery. For us boatmen, we had to clear the plants with our hands and it isn’t as effective as using heavy machinery,” said Soe Win, from Taun Thaman Lake Boatmen Association.
Most of the northern part of the Lake is covered with Hyacinths and the jetty near U-Bein Bridge is also covered with Hyacinths. Those that lives off the lake have to put time into clearing away the plants every day.Every year, tourism peak season and Hyacinths growth season overlaps in Taun Thaman Lake. As it is now the tourist season, the arrival of visitors have increased compared to previous months. Chinese tourist arrivals was marked at 200 visitors per day.
U Bein Bridge is a crossing that spans Taun Thaman Lake near Amarapura in Mandalay.. The 1.2-kilometre (0.75 mi) bridge was built around 1850 and is believed to be the oldest and (once) longest teak wood bridge in the world. It is one of the well known tourist attraction in Mandalay.