Mar Chiquita is Argentina''s biggest lake, and the world''s fifth largest steppe lake. The latter is only true, when the water level is high. In that case, Mar Chiquita covers an area of 5,770 sq. km, in periods of extended drought, the lake surface can drop to 1,960 sq. km. The salt content fluctuates from 25 to 290 g/l depending on the water level. These extreme conditions protected the lake from overpopulation and overuse. Two areas around the lake are under protection, the Reserva Natural de Vaquerias covering 3 sq. km and the Reserva Natural de Fauna Laguna De Felipa covering 13 sq. km.