The Center for Earth and Environmental Science describes that floodplains are formed as rivers erode their own banks. Floodplains are the flat lands that lie adjacent to a river; they encompass the area that floods when the river's water level rises. As the river flows, it washes material downstream. When a flood occurs, this material is resuspended in the water and added to the floodplain.Know More
According to The Center for Earth and Environmental Science, the ground underlying floodplains is largely composed of layers of silt, sand and mud. These layers are formed by periods of flooding, during which sediment is deposited on the floodplain, according to University of North Texas. During periods of flooding, some water is also absorbed by the floodplain soils. This prevents the flood from spreading further into the surrounding lands and causing erosion. This reserved water returns to the river during periods of lower water.
Floodplains are important to the natural environment for several reasons. According to The Center for Earth and Environmental Science, they provide habitats for numerous unique species of plants and animals. They also reduce the severity of floods and their effects on human developments, filter storm water and minimize water pollution from non-point sources.Learn more about Landforms
Streams form when downhill running water creates a channel capable of carrying water. Most streams begin as temporary rivulets that only have water after a rainfall.Full Answer >
Cliffs form through tectonic activity, water movement, weathering, erosion and glacier activity. Earthquakes and landslides also form cliffs. Cliffs tend to form on coasts, in mountainous areas, along rivers or as the walls of canyons.Full Answer >
Islands form in several ways. The most common events that lead to island formation are volcanic activity and continental drift. Islands also form due to erosion, buildup of sediment and coral that grows enough to penetrate the surface of the water.Full Answer >
According to NationalGeographic.com, bays are formed through various ways, such as plate tectonics, overflowing of the ocean to a coastline and the slicing of a glacier through a bedrock. Bays are bodies of water partially surrounded by land, and they are typically less enclosed and smaller than a gulf.Full Answer >