Erosion occurs on all types of rocks ... the sea acts like a saw, trimming back the land and gradually widening the cliff face – whether chalk or granite ...
|Wave-cut platform caused by erosion |
of cliffs by the sea, at Southerndown,
in South Wales
The tidal currents and pounding waves carry the sand, silt and mud sometimes extending the beach as a spit, right out into the sea. Spurn Head is one of these on the Humber Estuary ...
Estuaries - where two worlds meet - where the fresh water of a river joins the salt water of the sea.
The sediment in the rivers builds mud-banks, the shingle and sands get moved around creating difficult navigating conditions – as the tidal flow changes the course of river’s movement ... eroding as it goes ...
|Copepods, from |
Ernst Haeckel's 1904 work
Kunstfformen der Natur
A teeming world exists in the mud-banks – supporting a wealth of worms, crustaceans, molluscs and other animals ... fed on by many species of bird.
Estuary waters are layered:
· fresh water at the surface, flowing seawards;
· heavier salt water at the bottom, which flows upstream with the tides;
· brackish water in between ... a mixture of both ... which moves in either direction dependent on the ebb and flow.
Creatures have adapted to live in the three layers ... but some animals are migrants, moving up and down estuaries to spawn or feed: salmon, sea lampreys, or eels ...
|Bridgwater Bay - where|
we've had the dreadful
Somerset Levels floods
Eels – amazing creatures ... I wrote comprehensively about them nearly five years ago! ... one of my very early posts: SlipperyCustomers.
Our eels travel thousands of miles across the Atlantic Ocean to the Sargasso Sea – that barren, windless, weed-filled area – to breed.
My eel post mentions: Aristotle, Sigmund Freud, Pepys, King John of Magna Carta fame ... a veritable ‘eel’ feast!
|Sea horse amongst eel grass|
Eel-Grass, Zostera marina, is found on sandy substrates or in estuaries ... eel-grass beds are important for sediment deposition and stabilisation of the inter-tidal zones.
The beds form economically important nursery grounds for many species ... fish and shellfish ... allowing pipefish and seahorses to shelter amongst the swaying fronds.
Everlasting Thrift (Sea Pinks) grows in a cushion as protection against the wind, hanging on to rocky crevices and giving us beautiful coastal views.
It retains its colour when dried and so is a favourite with flower arrangers.
That is E for ever-occurring Erosion, enigmatic Estuaries, errant Eels, expedient Eel Grass, exalted Everlasting Thrift ... from Aspects of British Coasts ...
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