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  1. A stream of less volume than a river but larger than a brook. 2. A small tidal channel through a coastal marsh. 3. A wide arm of a river or bay, as used locally in Maryland and Virginia

Related Terms


The belt of low flat ground bordering a stream or river channel that is flooded when runoff exceeds the capacity of the stream channel.


A fixed dam across a stream channel for the retention of sand, gravel, driftwood, or other debris.


  1. An embayment of the coast in which fresh river water entering at its head mixes with the relatively saline ocean water. When tidal action is the dominant mixing agent, it is usually called TIDAL ESTUARY. 2. the lower reaches and mouth of a river emptying directly into the sea where tidal mixing takes place. Sometimes called RIVER ESTUARY. 3. A drowned river mouth due to sinking of the land near the coast.


  1. A relatively long arm of the sea or ocean forming a channel between an island and a mainland or connecting two larger bodies of water, as a sea and the ocean, or two parts of the same body but usually wider and more extensive than a strait. The term has been applied to many features which do not fit the accepted definition. Many are very large bodies of water such as Mississippi Sound and Prince William Sound, others are mere salt water ponds or small passages between islands. 2. A vibratory disturbance in air or some other elastic medium, capable of being heard by the human ear, and generally of a frequency between about 20 and 20,000 cycles per second.


The vertical distance from a given water level to the sea bottom. The charted depth is the vertical distance from the tidal datum to the bottom. The least depth in the approach or channel to an area, such as a port or anchorage, governing the maximum draft of vessels that can enter is called the controlling depth.


A minor marshland or tidal waterway which usually connects other tidal areas; often more or less equivalent to a bayou occasionally applied to the sea level portion of a creek on the U.S. West Coast.


Formed by part of the Tsushima Current and river dis- charge in Tatar Strait, the coastal Liman Current flows southward in the western part of the Sea of Japan. During winter, it may reach as far sout


A perpendicular or nearly perpendicular descent of river or stream water.


A network composed of the primary control tide stations of the National Ocean Service. This network of coastal observation stations provides the basic tidal datums for coastal boundaries and chart datums of the United States. Tidal datums obtained at secondary control tide stations and tertiary tide stations are referenced to the Network.


A vacuum pump in which a stream of heavy molecules, such as mercury vapor, carries gas molecules out of the volume being evacuated; also used for separating isotopes according to weight, the lighter molecules being pumped preferentially by the vapor stream.

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