Encyclopedia of Coastal Science

2019 Edition
| Editors: Charles W. Finkl, Christopher Makowski

Bay Beaches

  • Karl F. NordstromEmail author
  • Nancy L. Jackson
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-93806-6_29


Beaches in mostly enclosed bays subject to reworking by locally generated fetch-limited waves.

Beaches are found in bays, sounds, lagoons, and estuaries (here all termed bays) and can comprise a large proportion of the shoreline. Examples include beaches in Chesapeake Bay, Puget Sound, the Tagus River, and arms of the Baltic Sea. The term bay in relation to the open coast is somewhat subjective, and bays such as Monterey Bay, California, may be exposed to ocean waves with energy levels that are among the highest in the world. This discussion is confined to low-energy beaches that occur in mostly enclosed bays where fetch distances for local wave generation are generally less than 50 km. Bay beaches are a subset of low-energy beaches (Jackson et al. 2002) and share many characteristics with beaches in small lakes and reservoirs (Nordstrom and Jackson 2012).

The length of bays greatly exceeds the length of ocean shore in many countries. Beaches are common in these bays, but...

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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Marine and Coastal SciencesRutgers UniversityNew BrunswickUSA
  2. 2.Department of Chemistry and Environmental ScienceNew Jersey Institute of Technology, University HeightsNewarkUSA