|What Is An Oxbow
An oxbow is a crescent-shaped lake lying alongside a winding river. The oxbow lake is created over time as erosion and deposits of soil change the river's course. You can see how an oxbow lake takes shape below:
|(1) On the inside of the loop, the river travels more slowly leading to deposition of silt.|
|(2) Meanwhile water on the outside edges tends to flow faster, which erodes the banks making the meander even wider.|
|(3) Over time the loop of the meander widens until the neck vanishes altogether.|
|(4) Then the meander is removed from the river's current and the horseshoe shaped oxbow lake is formed.|
|Without a current to move the water along,
sediment builds up along the banks and fills in the lake.