Markonahalli Dam is a dam built across the river Shimsha in the Kunigal Taluk of Tumkur district. It was built by Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV, the king of Mysore under the guidance of his Diwan, Sir M Visweswaraiah. It was built to irrigate 6070 hectares of land and has a masonry structure of 139 m and a pair of earth dams extending to 1470 metres on either side. The reservoir has a catchment area of 4,103 km2 and can hold a volume of 68 million mÃÂ³ of water at a full reservoir level of 731.57 m above the mean sea level. 27 species of fish, including 13 species of commercial fishes have been recorded in the reservoir with Puntius being the dominant species of fish found here. Cirrhinus reba and Labeo calbasu and other transplanted carps are also found here. However, the maintenance of the dam has been poor. In 2000, a part of the dam had to be demolished to prevent floods and save 25 villages. Water started overflowing the dam and only 1 crest gate could be opened. Nearly 150 feet of the dam was demolished to allow excess water to flow out.
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