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A riparian zone or riparian area is the interface between land and a
river A river is a natural flowing watercourse, usually freshwater, flowing towards an ocean, sea, lake or another river. In some cases, a river flows into the ground and becomes dry at the end of its course without reaching another body of wate ...

river
or
stream A stream is a body of water (Lysefjord) in Norway Norway, officially the Kingdom of Norway,Names in the official and recognised languages: Bokmål Bokmål (, ; literally "book tongue") is an official written standard for the No ...

stream
. Riparian is also the proper nomenclature for one of the terrestrial
biome A biome is a collection of plants Plants are predominantly photosynthetic Photosynthesis is a process used by plants and other organisms to Energy transformation, convert light energy into chemical energy that, through cellular respi ...
s of the Earth. Plant habitats and communities along the river margins and
banks A bank is a financial institution Financial institutions, otherwise known as banking institutions, are corporation A corporation is an organization—usually a group of people or a company—authorized by the State (polity), stat ...
are called riparian vegetation, characterized by hydrophilic plants. Riparian zones are important in
ecology Ecology (from el, οἶκος, "house" and el, -λογία, label=none, "study of") is the study of the relationships between living organisms, including humans, and their physical environment. Ecology considers organisms In biol ...
,
environmental resource management Environmental resource management is the management Management (or managing) is the administration of an organization, whether it is a business, a not-for-profit organization, or government body. Management includes the activities of se ...
, and
civil engineering Civil engineering is a professional engineering Regulation and licensure in engineering is established by various jurisdictions of the world to encourage public welfare, safety, well-being and other interests of the general public and to defin ...
because of their role in
soil conservation Soil conservation is the prevention of loss of the top most layer of the soil from erosion In earth science Earth science or geoscience includes all fields of natural science Natural science is a branch of science Science (from ...
, their habitat
biodiversity Biodiversity is the biological variety and Genetic variability, variability of life, life on Earth. Biodiversity is a measure of variation at the Genetics, genetic, species, and ecosystem level. Terrestrial biodiversity is usually greater near ...

biodiversity
, and the influence they have on
fauna Fauna is all of the animal Animals (also called Metazoa) are multicellular eukaryotic organisms that form the Kingdom (biology), biological kingdom Animalia. With few exceptions, animals Heterotroph, consume organic material, Cellular r ...

fauna
and
aquatic ecosystem An aquatic ecosystem is an ecosystem An ecosystem (or ecological system) consists of all the organisms and the physical environment with which they interact. These biotic and abiotic components are linked together through nutrient cycles a ...

aquatic ecosystem
s, including
grassland Grasslands are areas where the vegetation Vegetation is an assemblage of species and the they provide. It is a general term, without specific reference to particular , life forms, structure, extent, or any other specific or geographic ...

grassland
s,
woodland A woodland () is, in the broad sense, land covered with trees, or in a narrow sense, synonymous with wood (or in the U.S., the ''plurale tantum'' woods), a low-density forest forming open habitats with plenty of sunlight and limited shade (see d ...

woodland
s,
wetland A wetland is a distinct ecosystem An ecosystem (or ecological system) consists of all the organisms and the physical environment with which they interact. These biotic and abiotic components are linked together through nutrient cycles ...

wetland
s, or even non-vegetative areas. In some regions, the terms riparian woodland,
riparian forest 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 (geography), sink or reservoir. Etymology The term riparian comes from ...
,
riparian buffer A riparian buffer or stream buffer is a vegetated Vegetation is an assemblage of plant species and the ground cover they provide. It is a general term, without specific reference to particular Taxon, taxa, life forms, structure, Spatial ecology, ...
zone, riparian corridor, and riparian strip are used to characterize a riparian zone. The word ''riparian'' is derived from
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Republic, it became ...

Latin
''
ripa Ripa or RIPA may refer to: Places * Ripa (rione of Rome) Ripa is the 12th '' rione'' of Rome , established_title = Founded , established_date = 753 BC , founder = King Romulus , image_map = Map of comune of Ro ...
'', meaning "
river bank A man-made lake in Keukenhof with grass banks In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, features, inhabitants, and phenomena of the ...
".


Characteristics

Riparian zones may be natural or engineered for soil stabilization or
restoration Restoration is the act of restoring something to its original state and may refer to: * Conservation and restoration of cultural heritage * Restoration style Film and television * ''The Restoration'' (1909 film), a film by D.W. Griffith starr ...
. These zones are important natural
biofilter composting plant biofilter mound - note sprinkler visible front right to maintain proper moisture level for optimum functioning Biofiltration is a pollution control Pollution is the introduction of contaminants into the natural environment t ...
s, protecting aquatic environments from excessive
sediment Sediment is a naturally occurring material that is broken down by processes of weathering and erosion, and is subsequently sediment transport, transported by the action of wind, water, or ice or by the force of gravity acting on the particles. ...

sediment
ation, polluted
surface runoff Surface runoff (also known as overland flow) is the flow of water Water (chemical formula H2O) is an , transparent, tasteless, odorless, and , which is the main constituent of 's and the s of all known living organisms (in which it ac ...
, and
erosion In earth science Earth science or geoscience includes all fields of natural science Natural science is a branch of science Science (from the Latin word ''scientia'', meaning "knowledge") is a systematic enterprise that Scientific ...

erosion
. They supply shelter and food for many
aquatic animal An aquatic animal is an animal Animals (also called Metazoa) are organisms that form the Animalia. With few exceptions, animals , , are , can , and grow from a hollow sphere of , the , during . Over 1.5 million animal have been — ...
s and shade that limits stream temperature change. When riparian zones are damaged by
construction Construction is a general term meaning the and to form , , or ,"Construction" def. 1.a. 1.b. and 1.c. ''Oxford English Dictionary'' Second Edition on CD-ROM (v. 4.0) Oxford University Press 2009 and comes from ''constructio'' (from ''com-' ...

construction
,
agriculture Agriculture is the science, art and practice of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of sedentary Image:Family watching television 1958.jpg, Exercise trends, Increases in sedentary behaviors su ...

agriculture
or
silviculture Silviculture is the practice of controlling the growth, composition/structure, and quality of forest A forest is an area of land dominated by tree In botany, a tree is a perennial plant with an elongated Plant stem, stem, or trunk ...
, biological restoration can take place, usually by human intervention in
erosion control Erosion control is the practice of preventing or controlling wind or water erosion In earth science, erosion is the action of surface processes (such as Surface runoff, water flow or wind) that removes soil, Rock (geology), rock, or dissolved ...
and revegetation. If the area adjacent to a
watercourse A watercourse is the channel Channel, channels, channeling, etc., may refer to: Geography * Channel (geography), in physical geography, a landform consisting of the outline (banks) of the path of a narrow body of water. Australia * Channel Cou ...

watercourse
has standing water or saturated soil for as long as a season, it is normally termed a
wetland A wetland is a distinct ecosystem An ecosystem (or ecological system) consists of all the organisms and the physical environment with which they interact. These biotic and abiotic components are linked together through nutrient cycles ...

wetland
because of its
hydric soil Hydric soil is soil Surface-water- gley developed in glacial till, Northern Ireland.">Northern_Ireland.html" ;"title="glacial till, Northern Ireland">glacial till, Northern Ireland. Soil is a mixture of organic matter, minerals, gases, liquid ...
characteristics. Because of their prominent role in supporting a
diversity of species
diversity of species
, riparian zones are often the subject of national protection in a biodiversity action plan. These are also known as a "plant or vegetation waste buffer". Research shows that riparian zones are instrumental in
water quality Water quality refers to the chemical A chemical substance is a form of matter In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is any substance that has mass and takes up space by having volume. All everyday objects that can be touche ...

water quality
improvement for both surface runoff and water flowing into streams through subsurface or
groundwater Groundwater is the water Water (chemical formula H2O) is an , transparent, tasteless, odorless, and , which is the main constituent of 's and the s of all known living organisms (in which it acts as a ). It is vital for all known form ...

groundwater
flow. Riparian zones can play a role in lowering nitrate contamination in surface runoff, such as manure and other
fertilizer A fertilizer (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the United States. Currently, American E ...

fertilizer
s from agricultural fields, that would otherwise damage
ecosystem An ecosystem (or ecological system) consists of all the organisms and the physical environment with which they interact. These biotic and abiotic components are linked together through nutrient cycles and energy flows. Energy enters the syst ...

ecosystem
s and human health. Particularly, the attenuation of
nitrate Nitrate is a polyatomic ion A polyatomic ion, also known as a molecular ion, is a covalently bonded A covalent bond is a chemical bond A chemical bond is a lasting attraction between atoms, ions or molecules that enables the format ...

nitrate
or
denitrification Denitrification is a microbially facilitated process where nitrate (NO3−) is reduced and ultimately produces molecular nitrogen Nitrogen is the chemical element with the Symbol (chemistry), symbol N and atomic number 7. It was first discove ...
of the nitrates from
fertilizer A fertilizer (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the United States. Currently, American E ...

fertilizer
in this buffer zone is important. The use of wetland riparian zones shows a particularly high rate of removal of nitrate entering a stream and thus has a place in agricultural management. Also in terms of carbon transport from terrestrial ecosystems to aquatic ecosystems, riparian groundwater can play an important role. As such, a distinction can be made between parts of the riparian zone that connect large parts of the landscape to streams, and riparian areas with more local groundwater contributions.


Roles and functions

Riparian zones dissipate stream energy. The
meander A meander is one of a series of regular sinuous curves in the channel of a river or other watercourse. It is produced as a watercourse the s of an outer, concave bank () and deposits sediments on an inner, convex bank which is typically a . Th ...

meander
ing curves of a river, combined with vegetation and root systems, slow the flow of water, which reduces soil erosion and flood damage. Sediment is trapped, reducing suspended solids to create less
turbid Turbidity is the cloudiness or haziness of a fluid In physics, a fluid is a substance that continually Deformation (mechanics), deforms (flows) under an applied shear stress, or external force. Fluids are a Phase (matter), phase of matter a ...

turbid
water, replenish soils, and build stream banks. Pollutants are filtered from surface runoff, enhancing water quality via biofiltration. The riparian zones also provide
wildlife Wildlife traditionally refers to undomesticated animal Animals (also called Metazoa) are multicellular A multicellular organism is an organism In biology, an organism () is any organic, life, living system that functi ...

wildlife
habitat Ibex in an alpine habitat In ecology Ecology (from el, οἶκος, "house" and el, -λογία, label=none, "study of") is the study of the relationships between living organisms, including humans, and their physical environment. ...

habitat
, increased biodiversity, and
wildlife corridor A wildlife corridor, habitat corridor, or green corridor is an area of habitat Ibex in an alpine habitat In ecology, the term habitat summarises the array of resources, physical and biotic factors that are present in an area, such as to s ...
s, enabling aquatic and riparian organisms to move along river systems avoiding isolated communities. Riparian vegetation can also provide
forage Forage is a plant material (mainly plant leaves and stems) eaten by grazing In agriculture Agriculture is the science, art and practice of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of sedentism, se ...

forage
for wildlife and livestock. Riparian zones are also important for the fish that live within rivers, such as brook and charr. Impacts on riparian zones can affect fish, and restoration is not always sufficient to recover fish populations. They provide native
landscape A landscape is the visible features of an area of , its s, and how they integrate with or man-made features.''New Oxford American Dictionary''. A landscape includes the physical elements of ly defined s such as (ice-capped) , , such as s, s, ...

landscape
irrigation by extending seasonal or perennial flows of water. Nutrients from terrestrial vegetation (e.g.
plant litter Litterfall, plant litter, leaf litter, tree litter, soil litter, or duff, is dead plant material (such as leaf, leaves, Bark (botany), bark, Needle (botany), needles, twigs, and cladodes) that have fallen to the ground. This detritus or dead orga ...
and insect drop) are transferred to aquatic food webs. The vegetation surrounding the stream helps to shade the water, mitigating water temperature changes. The vegetation also contributes wood debris to streams, which is important to maintaining
geomorphology Geomorphology (from Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally referred to by speakers simply as Greek ...

geomorphology
. From a social aspect, riparian zones contribute to nearby property values through amenity and views, and they improve enjoyment for footpaths and bikeways through supporting
foreshoreway , a 4.7 km (2.9 mi) elevated linear park built on top of obsolete railway infrastructure in the 12th arrondissement of Paris, France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a countr ...
networks. Space is created for riparian sports such as fishing, swimming, and launching for vessels and paddle craft. The riparian zone acts as a sacrificial erosion buffer to absorb impacts of factors including
climate change Contemporary climate change includes both the global warming caused by humans, and its impacts on Earth's weather patterns. There have been previous periods of climate change, but the current changes are more rapid than any known even ...
, increased runoff from
urbanization Urbanization (or urbanisation) refers to the population shift from rural File:Rural landscape in Finland.jpg, A rural landscape in Lappeenranta, South Karelia, Finland. 15 July 2000. In general, a rural area or a countryside is a geographi ...
, and increased boat wake without damaging structures located behind a setback zone.


Role in logging

The protection of riparian zones is often a consideration in
logging Logging is the process of cutting, processing, and moving trees to a location for transport. It may include skidder, skidding, on-site processing, and loading of trees or trunk (botany), logs onto logging truck, trucks or flatcar#Skeleton car, s ...

logging
operations. The undisturbed soil, soil cover, and vegetation provide shade, plant litter, and woody material, and reduce the delivery of
soil eroded
soil eroded
from the harvested area. Factors such as soil types and
root In vascular plant Vascular plants (from Latin ''vasculum'': duct), also known as Tracheophyta (the tracheophytes , from Greek τραχεῖα ἀρτηρία ''trācheia artēria'' 'windpipe' + φυτά ''phutá'' 'plants'), form a large grou ...

root
structures,
climatic Climate is the long-term average of weather, typically averaged over a period of 30 years. More rigorously, it is the mean and variability of meteorological variables over a time spanning from months to millions of years. Some of the Meteorology, ...

climatic
conditions, and vegetative cover determine the effectiveness of riparian buffering.


Vegetation

The assortment of riparian zone trees varies from those of wetlands and typically consists of plants that are either emergent aquatic plants, or
herb In general use, herbs are a widely distributed and widespread group of plants, excluding vegetables Vegetables are parts of plants that are consumed by humans or other animals as food. The original meaning is still commonly used and is app ...

herb
s,
tree In botany, a tree is a perennial plant with an elongated Plant stem, stem, or trunk (botany), trunk, supporting branches and leaves in most species. In some usages, the definition of a tree may be narrower, including only wood plants with se ...

tree
s and
shrub A shrub (often called a bush) is a small- to medium-sized perennial A perennial plant or simply perennial is a plant Plants are predominantly photosynthetic eukaryotes of the Kingdom (biology), kingdom Plantae. Historically, the p ...

shrub
s that thrive in proximity to water.


North America


Water's edge

Herbaceous Perennial: *''
Peltandra virginica ''Peltandra virginica'' is a plant of the arum family known as green arrow arum and tuckahoe. It is widely distributed in wetlands A wetland is a distinct ecosystem An ecosystem is a community (ecology), community of living organisms in ...

Peltandra virginica
'' – Arrow Arum *''
Sagittaria lancifolia ''Sagittaria lancifolia'', the bulltongue arrowhead, is a perennial, monocot plant in the family Alismataceae, genus ''Sagittaria'', with herbaceous growth patterns. It is Native plant, native to the southeastern United States. It is known from e ...
'' – Arrowhead *''
Carex stricta ''Carex stricta'' is a species of sedge The Cyperaceae are a family of graminoid (grass-like), monocotyledonous flowering plants known as sedges. The Family (biology), family is large, with some 5,500 known species described in about 90 genera ...

Carex stricta
'' – Tussock Sedge *''
Iris virginica
Iris virginica
'' – Southern Blue Flag
Iris
Iris


Inundated riparian zone

Herbaceous Perennial: *''
Sagittaria latifolia ''Sagittaria latifolia'' is a plant found in shallow wetland A wetland is a distinct ecosystem An ecosystem is a community (ecology), community of living organisms in conjunction with the nonliving components of their environment, inter ...

Sagittaria latifolia
'' – Duck Potato *''
Schoenoplectus tabernaemontani ''Schoenoplectus tabernaemontani'' (Synonym (taxonomy), syn. ''Scirpus validus'') is a species of flowering plant in the Cyperaceae, sedge family known by the common names softstem bulrush, grey club-rush, and great bulrush. It can be found throug ...
'' – Softstem
Bulrush Bulrushes is the vernacular name for several large wetland A wetland is a distinct ecosystem An ecosystem is a community (ecology), community of living organisms in conjunction with the nonliving components of their environment, interact ...
*'' Scirpus americanus'' – Three-square Bulrush *'' Eleocharis quadrangulata'' – Square-stem Spikerush *'' Eleocharis obtusa'' – Spikerush


Western

In western North America and the Pacific coast, the riparian vegetation includes: Riparian trees *''
Sequoia sempervirens ''Sequoia sempervirens'' ()''Sunset Western Garden Book,'' 1995:606–607 is the sole living species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as a ...

Sequoia sempervirens
'' – Coast Redwood *''
Thuja plicata ''Thuja plicata'', commonly called western red cedar or Pacific red cedar, giant arborvitae or western arborvitae, or just cedar, giant cedar, or shinglewood, is a species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification ...
'' – Western Redcedar *''
Abies grandis ''Abies grandis'' (grand fir, giant fir, lowland white fir, great silver fir, western white fir, Vancouver fir, or Oregon fir) is a fir native to the Pacific Northwest and Northern California Northern California (colloquially known as NorCa ...
'' – Grand Fir *''
Picea sitchensis ''Picea sitchensis'', the Sitka spruce, is a large, conifer Conifers are a group of conifer cone, cone-bearing Spermatophyte, seed plants, a subset of gymnosperms. Scientifically, they make up the phylum, division Pinophyta (), also known a ...
'' – Sitka Spruce *''
Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ''Chamaecyparis lawsoniana'', known as Port Orford cedar or Lawson cypress, is a species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as a unit of biodivers ...

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana
'' – Port Orford-cedar *''
Taxus brevifolia ''Taxus brevifolia'', the Pacific yew or western yew, is a species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as a unit of biodiversity. A species is ofte ...

Taxus brevifolia
'' – Pacific Yew *''
Populus fremontii ''Populus fremontii'', commonly known as Frémont's cottonwood, is a cottonwood (and thus a poplar) native to riparian zones of the Southwestern United States The southwestern United States, also known as the American Southwest or simply the ...
'' – Fremont Cottonwood *''
Populus trichocarpa ''Populus trichocarpa'', the black cottonwood, western balsam-poplar or California poplar, is a deciduous In the fields of horticulture and botany, the term ''deciduous'' (; ) means "falling off at maturity" and "tending to fall off", in ref ...
'' – Black Cottonwood *''
Platanus racemosa ''Platanus racemosa'' is a species of plane tree known by several common names, including California sycamore, western sycamore, California plane tree, and in North American Spanish aliso. ''Platanus racemosa'' is native to California Cal ...
'' – California Sycamore *''
Alnus rhombifolia ''Alnus rhombifolia'', the white alder, is an alder Alder is the common name of a genus Genus (plural genera) is a taxonomic rank Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the prin ...
'' – White Alder *''
Alnus rubra ''Alnus rubra'', the red alder, is a deciduous In the fields of horticulture and botany, the term ''deciduous'' (; ) means "falling off at maturity" and "tending to fall off", in reference to trees and shrubs that seasonally shed leaves, usu ...
'' – Red Alder *''
Acer macrophyllum ''Acer macrophyllum'', the bigleaf maple or Oregon maple, is a large deciduous tree in the genus '' Acer''. Big Leaf Maple can grow up to tall, but more commonly reaches tall. It is native to western North America North America is a ...
'' – Big-leaf Maple *'' Fraxinus latifolia'' – Oregon ash *'' Prunus emarginata'' – Bitter Cherry *'' Salix lasiolepis'' – Arroyo Willow *'' Salix lucida'' – Pacific Willow *''
Quercus agrifolia ''Quercus agrifolia'', the California live oak, coast live oak, or holm oak, is a highly variable, often shrubby A shrub (or bush, but this is more of a gardening term) is a small- to medium-sized perennial woody plant. Unlike herbaceous pla ...

Quercus agrifolia
'' – Coast live oak *''
Quercus garryana ''Quercus garryana'' is an oak tree species of the Pacific Northwest The Pacific Northwest (PNW), sometimes referred to as Cascadia, is a geographic region in western North America North America is a continent entirely within the N ...

Quercus garryana
'' – Garry oak *''
Populus tremuloides ''Populus tremuloides'' is a deciduous In the fields of horticulture Horticulture is the art of cultivating plants in gardens to produce food and medicinal ingredients, or for comfort and ornamental purposes. Horticulturists are agricu ...
'' – Quaking Aspen *''
Umbellularia californica ''Umbellularia californica'' is a large hardwood tree In botany, a tree is a perennial plant with an elongated Plant stem, stem, or trunk (botany), trunk, supporting branches and leaves in most species. In some usages, the definition of a ...
'' – California Bay Laurel *''
Cornus nuttallii ''Cornus nuttallii'', the Pacific dogwood or mountain dogwood, is a species of dogwood native to western North America North America is a continent entirely within the Northern Hemisphere and almost all within the Western Hemisphere. ...
'' – Pacific Dogwood Riparian shrubs *'''' – Vine Maple *'''' – Gooseberies and Currants *'' Rosa pisocarpa'' – Swamp Rose or Cluster Rose *'''' – Snowberry *'''' – Douglas spirea *'''' – Blackberries, Raspberries, Thimbleberry, Salmonberry *'''' – Western Azalea *''
Oplopanax horridus Devil's club or devil's walking stick (''Oplopanax horridus'', Araliaceae The Araliaceae is a family of flowering plants composed of about 43 Genus, genera and approximately 1500 species consisting of primarily woody plants and some herbaceous ...
'' – Devil's Club *'' Oemleria cerasiformis'' – Indian Plum, Osoberry *''
Lonicera involucrata ''Lonicera involucrata'', the bearberry honeysuckle, bracted honeysuckle, twinberry honeysuckle, Californian Honeysuckle, twin-berry, or black twinberry, is a species of honeysuckle native to northern and western North America, from southern Alask ...
'' – Twinberry *''
Cornus stolonifera ''Cornus sericea'', synonym (taxonomy), syn. ''C. stolonifera'', ''Swida sericea'', red osier or red-osier dogwood, is a species of flowering plant in the family (biology), family Cornaceae, native plant, native throughout northern and western No ...
'' – Red-osier Dogwood *'''' – Willows Other plants *''
Polypodium ''Polypodium'' is a genus of fern A fern (Polypodiopsida or Polypodiophyta ) is a member of a group of vascular plants (plants with xylem and phloem) that reproduce via spores and have neither seed A seed is an embryonic plant en ...
'' – Polypody Ferns *''
Polystichum ''Polystichum'' is a genus Genus (plural genera) is a taxonomic rank Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the principles that underlie such classification. The term may also refer t ...
'' – Sword Ferns *'' Woodwardia'' – Giant Chain Ferns *''Pteridium'' – Goldback Ferns *''Dryopteris'' – Wood Ferns *''Adiantum'' – Maidenhair Ferns *''Carex, Carex spp.'' – Sedges *''Juncus, Juncus spp.'' – Rushes *''Festuca californica'' – California Fescue bunchgrass *''Leymus condensatus'' – Giant Wildrye bunchgrass *''Melica californica'' – California Melic bunchgrass *''Mimulus, Mimulus spp.'' – Monkeyflower and varieties *''Aquilegia, Aquilegia spp.'' – Columbine


Asia

In Asia there are different types of riparian vegetation, but the interactions between hydrology and ecology are similar as occurs in other geographic areas. *''Carex, Carex spp.'' – Sedges *''Juncus, Juncus spp.'' – Rushes


Australia

Typical riparian vegetation in temperate New South Wales, Australia include: *''Acacia melanoxylon'' – Blackwood *''Acacia pravissima'' – Ovens Wattle *''Acacia rubida'' – Red Stem Wattle *''Bursaria lasiophylla'' – Blackthorn *''Callistemon citrinus'' – Crimson Bottlebrush *''Callistemon sieberi'' – River Bottlebrush *''Casuarina cunninghamiana'' – River She-Oak *''Eucalyptus bridgesiana'' – Apple Box *''Eucalyptus camaldulensis'' – River Red Gum *''Eucalyptus melliodora'' – Yellow Box *''Eucalyptus viminalis'' – Manna Gum *''Kunzea ericoides'' – Burgan *''Leptospermum obovatum'' – River Tea-Tree *''Melaleuca ericifolia'' – Swamp Paperbark


Central Europe

Typical riparian zone trees in Central Europe include: *''Acer campestre'' – Field Maple *''Acer pseudoplatanus'' – Sycamore Maple *''Alnus glutinosa'' – Black Alder *''Carpinus betulus'' – European Hornbeam *''Fraxinus excelsior'' – European Ash *''Juglans regia'' – Persian Walnut *''Malus sylvestris'' – European Wild Apple *''Populus alba'' – White Poplar *''Populus nigra'' – Black Poplar *''Quercus robur'' – Pedunculate Oak *''Salix alba'' – White Willow *''Salix fragilis'' – Crack Willow *''Tilia cordata'' – Small-leaved Lime *''Ulmus laevis'' – European White Elm *''Ulmus minor'' – Field Elm


Repair and restoration

Land clearing followed by floods can quickly erode a riverbank, taking valuable grasses and soils downstream, and later allowing the sun to bake the land dry. Natural Sequence Farming techniques have been used in the Upper Hunter Shire, Upper Hunter Valley of New South Wales, Australia, in an attempt to rapidly restore eroded farms to optimum productivity. The Natural Sequence Farming technique involves placing obstacles in the water's pathway to lessen the energy of a flood, and help the water to deposit soil and Seep (hydrology), seep into the flood zone. Another technique is to quickly establish ecological succession by encouraging fast-growing plants such as "weeds" (pioneer species) to grow. These may spread along the watercourse and cause environmental degradation, but may stabilize the soil, place carbon into the ground, and protect the land from drying. The weeds will improve the streambeds so that trees and grasses can return, and later ideally replace the weeds. There are several other techniques used by government and non-government agencies to address riparian and streambed degradation, ranging from the installation of bed control structures such as log sills to the use of pin groynes or rock emplacement. File:Cottonwood Creek, BLM, Oregon, 1988.jpg, alt=A rocky, brown stream bank mostly bare of vegetation, with a few aspen trees in the background, Cottonwood Creek riparian area in southeastern Oregon before restoration, 1988 File:Cottonwood Creek, BLM, Oregon, 2000.jpg, alt=The same stream bank lined with short grasses, with more aspen trees in the background, Cottonwood Creek riparian area during recovery, 2000 File:Cottonwood Creek, BLM, Oregon, 2002.jpg, alt=The same stream bank lined with higher grasses that obscure most of the water, with a thicker aspen grove behind, Cottonwood Creek riparian area after restoration, 2002


See also

* Accropode * Aquatic ecosystem * Bioswale * Bosque * Constructed wetland * Endorheic basin * Flood-meadow * Floodplain * Freshwater swamp forest * Gallery forest * Green belt * Marsh * Outwelling * Riparian water rights * Riparian-zone restoration * Riprap * Várzea forest * Vernal pool * Vulnerable waters * Water-meadow * Wetland


References


Further reading

* * *Parkyn, Stephanie. (2004). ''Review of Riparian Buffer Zone Effectiveness''. Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (New Zealand), www.maf.govt.nz/publications. *
Riparian Bibliography, National Agroforestry Center



External links


Dissertation on riparian vegetation of Chalakudy RiverNational Riparian Service Team, Bureau of Land ManagementRed River Basin Riparian ProjectRiparian Forest Buffers, Kansas State University
* {{DEFAULTSORT:Riparian Zone Riparian zone, Terrestrial biomes Environmental conservation Hydrology Water streams Rivers Habitats Habitat Water and the environment Freshwater ecology