In this article, I read the following lines:
The Great Lakes have claimed thousands of ships since European explorers began navigating the waters in the 1600s, but few have captured the public's imagination as has the Edmund Fitzgerald, which sank on Nov. 10, 1975, in Lake Superior.
To my mind, 'The Great Lakes' has claimed is correct.
Then I searched for 'the Great Lakes' and I got the following meaning from here:
The Great Lakes (also called the Laurentian Great Lakes,1 or the Great Lakes of North America) are a series of interconnected freshwater lakes located in northeastern North America, on the Canada–United States border, which connect to the Atlantic Ocean through the Saint Lawrence River.
My questions are: The Great Lakes looks a collective noun for a series of lakes, then why 'are' is used every time with it? Shouldn't they put 'is' instead of 'are'?