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Island-terminus evolution related to changing ebb-tidal-delta configuration: Texel, The Netherlands

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Author: Heteren, S. van · Oost, A.P. · Spek, A.J.F. van der · Elias, E.P.L.
Institution: TNO Bouw en Ondergrond
Source:Marine Geology, 1-4 SPEC. ISS., 235, 19-33
Identifier: 239770
Keywords: Geosciences · barrier island · beach ridge · coastal processes · dune ridge · luminescence dating · Coastal engineering · Coastal zones · Erosion · Geochronology · Sand · Tsunamis · Barrier island · Beach ridge · Coastal processes · Dune ridge · Luminescence dating · Tides · barrier island · beach ridge · coastal evolution · coastal landform · delta · deltaic deposit · dune · spit · Benelux · Eurasia · Europe · Netherlands · North Holland · Texel · Western Europe


Historical maps of southwest Texel and the adjacent ebb-tidal delta, supplemented with quartz OSL (Optically Stimulated Luminescence) ages of dune sand, span four centuries and show several links between coastal development and ebb-tidal-delta behavior. Updrift inlet migration governed recurved-spit formation, and changes in ebb-tidal-delta size and shape resulted in the formation of a bulge at the island terminus. Sustained updrift migration of the ebb-tidal delta resulted in a commensurate position shift of the bulge and eventually in flattening of the coastline. Regional coastal-management measures have had a strong influence on tidal-inlet and ebb-tidal-delta behavior, and therefore also on the changing shape of southwest Texel. Identification of relationships between ebb-tidal-delta behavior and changing barrier-terminus erosion-and-accretion patterns on a decadal to century time scale contributes to our understanding of coastal-system dynamics. Any barrier terminus with preserved sets of dune ridges holds a potential record on past ebb-tidal-delta orientations, which provide clues on past changes in tidal prisms and wave versus tide dominance. Under the current ebb-tidal-delta configuration, the entire westward-oriented coast of southwest Texel is too exposed for lasting accretion. Bulges resulting from future merger of shoals with the coast in this area will be eroded rapidly. © 2006.