Estuarine fronts: How important are they?
- Cite this article as:
- Largier, J.L. Estuaries (1993) 16: 1. doi:10.2307/1352760
Estuarine fronts have a role in estuarine circulation, productivity, sediment dynamics, and water quality. Despite their importance, our understanding is rather modest. While some insight can be drawn from studies of oceanic fronts, the shorter time scales of estuarine fronts often exclude the role of Coriolis forcing and geostrophy from the hydrodynamics and exclude the prospect of physiological adaptation from ecosystem dynamics. Conservative processes and rapid nonconservative processes like aggregation, settling, and behavioral responses are expected to be most important at estuarine fronts. Although generally short-lived, the recurrent periodic nature of estuarine fronts does include longer time scales and some attention should be given to the importance of this recurrence to longer time scale ecological responses.
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