Artibonite River

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Coordinates: 19°14′20″N 72°46′57″W / 19.23889°N 72.7825°W / 19.23889; -72.7825
Artibonite
Artibonito, Latibonit
River
Artibonite River in Haiti (2010).jpg
Countries Dominican Republic, Haiti
Tributaries
 - left Vallecito, Joca, Tocino, Macasía, Fer à Cheval
 - right Libón, Victorine, Guayamouc, Thomonde, Boucan Carré
Cities Pedro Santana, Bánica, Mirebalais
Source
 - location Cordillera Central, Dominican Republic
Mouth
 - location Gulf of Gonâve, Haiti
 - elevation m (0 ft)
 - coordinates 19°14′20″N 72°46′57″W / 19.23889°N 72.7825°W / 19.23889; -72.7825
Length 321 km (199 mi)
Basin 9,013 km² (3,480 sq mi)
Discharge for Pedro Santana
 - average 16.6 /s (586 cu ft/s)

The River Artibonite (Spanish, Artibonito; Haitian Creole, Latibonit) is a river in the island of Hispaniola. It is 321 km long (68 km in the Dominican Republic, 253 km in Haiti), the longest of the island and of Haiti.[1]

Name[change | change source]

The Taíno name of the river was Hatibonico.[2] Peter Martyr d'Anghiera wrote that the name was Attiboni or Attibonicus.[3] Some people said that the name was Guayajayuco but it is another river, tributary of the Artibonite.

Course[change | change source]

The source of the Artibonite is to the northeast of Río Limpio, in the Cordillera Central, Dominican Republic. The mouth of the Artibonite is in Haiti, south of La Grand Saline, at about 19°14′20″N, 72°46′57″O. It flows into the Gulf of Gonâve.

The river is the border between the Dominican Republic and Haiti for several kilometres, from the town of Pedro Santana to the point where it is joined by the River Macasías, and then turns west into Haiti.

Its watershed has an area of 9,013 km² (2,614 km² in the Dominican Republic, the rest in Haiti). Its discharge (volume of water which passes through a section of the river per unit of time) is 16.6 cubic metres per second at Pedro Santana.

Tributaries[change | change source]

The most important tributaries are the rivers Libón, Macasías and Joca, all of them in the Dominican Republic. The Libón River is the only important tributary that flows into the right side of the Artibonite.[1]

Environment[change | change source]

Deforestation has affected in a bad way the quality and amount of water in the River Artibonite in the Dominican Republic and Haiti. There are not many fishes; only tilapias are caught. There were American crocodiles (Crocodylus acutus) in the River Artibonite and in other rivers of the Hispaniola,[4] but now they are found only in the big lakes of the island.

Uses[change | change source]

The water of the river is used for irrigation in Haiti but not in the Dominican Republic because it flows here through high mountains. The Peligre Hydroelectric Dam was built on the Arbitonite; it produces electricity for Haiti.

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 De la Fuente, Santiago (1976). Geografía Dominicana. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic: Editora Colegial Quisqueyana. pp. 144.
  2. Las Casas, Bartolomé de (1967) (in Spanish). Apología Histórica Sumaria, Chapter V. Mexico: UNAM.
  3. Anglería, Pedro Martir de (1964) (in Spanish). Décadas. Mexico: José Porrúa e Hijos.
  4. de Saint-Méry, M.L.E. Moreau (1797-1798) (in French). Description topographique, physique, civile, politique et historique de la partie française de l'isle Saint-Domingue. Philadelphia, Paris, Hamburg. http://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/bpt6k111191g.