The Penuelas reservoir in central Chile was until twenty years ago the main source of water for the city of Valparaiso, holding enough water for 38,000 Olympic-size swimming pools. Water for only two pools now remains.
A huge expanse of dried and cracked earth that was once the lake bed is littered with fish skeletons and desperate animals searching for water.
Amid an historic 13-year drought, rainfall levels have slumped in this South American nation that hugs the continent's Pacific coast. Higher air temperatures have meant snow in the Andes, once a key store of meltwater for spring and summer, is not compacting, melts faster, or turns straight to vapor.
"Now there is no water, it is a desert here," Martinez told Reuters. "The animals are dying and there is nothing to do here in the lagoon any more."
(Photo Editing Kezia Levitas and Eve Watling; Text Editing Adam Jourdan and Rosalba O'Brien; Layout Eve Watling)