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Macro-meso tidal beach morphodynamics: An overview
Short, A.D. (1991). Macro-meso tidal beach morphodynamics: An overview. J. Coast. Res. 7(2): 417-436
In: Journal of Coastal Research. Coastal Education and Research Foundation: Fort Lauderdale. ISSN 0749-0208, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Author keywords
    Macro-tidal, meso-tidal, beaches, ridge and runnel, beach classification

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  • Short, A.D.

    Macro- and meso-tidal beaches are ubiquitous global coastal features about which comparatively little is known compared to their micro-tidal counterparts. A review of the literature reveals a considerable range in macro-tidal beach morphology and dynamics but with little perceived order in the range. This review together with recent morphological data from macro- tidal beaches on the central Queensland coast are combined to provide an overview, and to identify three types of macro-tidal beaches. Two are true beaches. Higher waves, and particularly swell produces moderate gradient (1- 3°), concave, planar beaches dominated by incident, though infragravity wave energy. Moderate waves and sea conditions tend to produce lower gradient (0.5°), multi-bar (ridge and runnel) topography also attributable to infragavity standing waves. As wave energy drops still further a third type results with a high tide beach fronting tide-dominated tidal flats. This latter is not a true beach but rather a transition from beach to tidal flat.

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