This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.Find sources: "Riparian forest" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (November 2014) (Learn how and when to remove this message)
A she-oak riparian forest in Western Sydney

A riparian forest or riparian woodland is a forested or wooded area of land adjacent to a body of water such as a river, stream, pond, lake, marshland, estuary, canal, sink or reservoir.

Etymology

Riparian forest in Záhorie Protected Landscape Area in Slovakia

The term riparian comes from the Latin word ripa, 'river bank'; technically it only refers to areas adjacent to flowing bodies of water such as rivers, streams, sloughs and estuaries. However, the terms riparian forest and riparian zone have come to include areas adjacent to non-flowing bodies of water such as ponds, lakes, playas and reservoirs.

Characteristics

A riparian forest area along a tributary to Lake Erie
Atlantic coastal salt marsh

Riparian forests are subject to frequent inundation.

Riparian forests help control sediment, reduce the damaging effects of flooding and aid in stabilizing stream banks.

Riparian zones are transition zones between an upland terrestrial environment and an aquatic environment. Organisms found in this zone are adapted to periodic flooding. Many not only tolerate it, but require it in order to maintain health and complete their lifestyles.[1]

Threats

Threats to riparian forests:

See also

References

  1. ^ Molles, M.C. Jr. (2008). Ecology: Concepts and Applications (4th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill. p. 291. ISBN 978-0-07-330976-7.
  2. ^ https://www.waterboards.ca.gov/waterrights/water_issues/programs/bay_delta/docs/cmnt081712/sldmwa/katibahabriefhistoryofriparianforestsinthecentral%20.pdf [bare URL PDF]