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Quick answer
"Estero" is a noun which is often translated as "estuary", and "laguna" is a noun which is often translated as "lake". Learn more about the difference between "estero" and "laguna" below.
estero(
ehs
-
teh
-
roh
)
A masculine noun is used with masculine articles and adjectives (e.g. el hombre guapo, el sol amarillo).
1. (river mouth)
Regionalism used in Latin America: all the countries in South America, Central America, and the Caribbean. Does not include Spain.
(Latin America)
a. estuary
Al llegar al estero, el agua dulce del río se mezcla con el agua salada del mar.The fresh water from the river mixes with the salt water from the sea when it reaches the estuary.
2. (bog) (Andes)
a. marsh
Cuando viajamos por la zona del estero, me picaron muchos mosquitos.When we traveled in the marsh area, I got a lot of mosquito bites.
b. swamp
En la época de lluvias, las tierras junto al lago se convierten en un estero.In the rainy season, the land next to the lake turns into a swamp.
3. (brook)
Regionalism used in Chile
(Chile)
a. stream
Me gustaba sentarme junto al estero y escuchar el agua correr.I liked sitting by the stream and listening to the water flowing.
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laguna(
lah
-
goo
-
nah
)
A feminine noun is almost always used with feminine articles and adjectives (e.g. la mujer bonita, la luna llena).
1. (body of water)
a. lake (of fresh water)
La laguna se llena con el agua del deshielo.The lake fills up with water from snow melt.
b. pool (of fresh water)
El agua de la laguna es muy clara porque el fondo es rocoso.The water in the pool is very clear because it has a rocky bottom.
c. pond (of fresh water)
Junto al pueblo hay una pequeña laguna que se seca en verano.Next to the village there is a small pond that dries up in the summer.
d. lagoon (of salt water)
La laguna casi divide la isla en dos.The lagoon nearly divides the island in two.
2. (something left out)
a. gap
Aunque su exposición fue brillante, su tesis tiene algunas lagunas.Although her presentation was brilliant, her thesis has some gaps.
b. omission
Una de las lagunas del proyecto de ley concierne su ámbito de aplicación.One of the omissions of the bill concerns its scope of application.
c. lacuna
Un juez está facultado para subsanar, cuando sea necesario, las lagunas de una ley.A judge is empowered to bridge, whenever necessary, the lacunae in a law.
3. (legal)
a. loophole
Existe una laguna jurídica que nos impide aplicar sanciones en dichos casos.There is a legal loophole that prevents us from taking disciplinary measures in such cases.
4. (deficiency)
a. gap
La mayoría de mis alumnos tienen grandes lagunas en matemáticas.The majority of my students have huge gaps in their knowledge of math.
5. (hole in a series)
a. gap
Una laguna en el proceso resultó en productos defectuosos.A gap in the process resulted in defective products.
6. (blackout)
a. memory lapse
Me golpeé la cabeza y no recuerdo bien qué pasó. Tengo muchas lagunas.I hit my head and can't remember well what happened. I have many memory lapses.
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