Kentucky’s ecosystems teem with diverse native species, some of which are found nowhere else in the world. Kentucky’s Natural Heritage by Greg Abernathy, Deborah White, Ellis L. Laudermilk, and Marc Evans brings these sometimes elusive creatures into close view, from black-throated green warblers to lizard skin liverworts. Kentucky has abundant surface and groundwater resources. The state’s surface waters include approximately 90,000 miles of streams and more than 229,000 acres of lakes and reservoirs.
Most of the state’s “lakes” are actually reservoirs formed by impounding streams. These reservoirs often are massive bodies of water, like Lake Cumberland, which encompasses more than 50,000 acres. The state’s few natural lakes, the largest of which is 341-acre Swan Lake in Ballard County, are found in the western portion of the Coastal Plain.