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EARTH SCIENCE > OCEANS > COASTAL PROCESSES > ESTUARIES
Definition:
Estuaries form a transition zone between river environments and ocean environments and are subject to both marine influences, such as tides, waves, and the influx of saline water; and riverine influences, such as flows of fresh water and sediment. The inflow of both seawater and freshwater provide high levels of nutrients in both the water column and sediment, making estuaries among the most productive natural habitats in the world.
Reference:
Black, J.A. 1986. Oceans and Coasts, An Introduction to Oceanography. William C. Brown Publishers. p. 278. Garrison, T. 1993. Oceanography, An Invitation to Marine Science. Wadsworth Publishing Co. p. 519.
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