|Physical setting and geomorphology of coastal lagoons|In: Kjerfve, B. (Ed.) (1994). Coastal lagoon processes. Elsevier Oceanography Series, 60. Elsevier Science: Amsterdam. ISBN 0-444-55556-0. xx, 577 pp., more
In: Elsevier Oceanography Series. Elsevier: Oxford; New york; Amsterdam. ISSN 0422-9894, more
Coastal lagoons are areas of relatively shallow water that have been partly or wholly enclosed from the sea by the formation of depositional barriers. They vary in size and shape in relation to antecedent morphology, the form of the enclosing barrier, and the extent of erosion and deposition since their initial formation. There are variations related to geological, hydrological, climatic and ecological factors. Some have been shallowed by sedimentation; others have shrunk as the result of bordering accretion, including swamp land encroachment; others have become rounded, and in some cases segmented by the growth and coalescence of cuspate spits. Salinity regimes, related primarily to the interaction of fresh water from rain and rivers with salt water from the sea, related to the dimensions and variability of marine entrances, condition their ecology, and determine the extent of mangroves, salt marsh and transitions to freshwater vegetation, which in turn influence swamp development and encroachment. Examples are given of lagoon dynamics related to each of these factors, and to recent man-induced changes.