Tides are caused by a combination of three factors: the moon's gravity, the sun's gravity and the earth's own gravity. The moon's gravity is the most significant of these forces; it exerts 2.2 times more force on the tides than the sun's gravity does.Know More
Lunar and solar tides occur in regular cycles. Lunar tides occur over a 24 hour and 50 minute cycle, while solar tides occur over a 24 hour cycle. In addition to these daily high- and low-tide cycles, the monthly lunar cycle produces what are called spring tides and neap tides.
Spring tides occur at the new moon and the full moon. All three gravitation forces that cause the tides are aligned at spring tide, causing a greater than average difference between high and low tides. Neap tides occur at the half moon and three-quarters moon; at neap tide, the sun and moon are 90 degrees apart. Their gravitational forces work against each other, causing a smaller than average difference between high and low tides.
The world's smallest tidal distances occur in the Mediterranean Sea, where the difference between high and low tide is less than 3 feet. The greatest distances are found in the Bay of Fundy in Canada, where the difference can exceed 50 feet.Learn more about Tides
Tides, which are rising and falling sea levels, are caused by the effects of gravitational forces of the moon and sun combined with the Earth's rotation. Tidal magnitudes are affected by shoreline shape, the shape of bodies of water and environmental factors.Full Answer >
According to Science and the Sea, lunar tides are the most common tides and are caused by the Moon's gravity. Although the Sun's gravity is stronger, it is farther from the Earth than the Moon, which is why lunar tides are more than two times stronger than solar tides.Full Answer >
Tides affect marine life by causing fish to gather in one spot, depending on the species and water depth. Strong tidal currents cause a concentration of bait and smaller fish that attracts larger fish to the area. Predicting tides is a tool fishermen use to improve their catches.Full Answer >
The moon's gravitational force pulls water towards it, creating a high tide on the surface of the ocean closest to the moon. Also, the centrifugal force created by the Earth and moon orbiting around a central point creates a similar bulge on the opposite side, creating a second high tide.Full Answer >