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Altamaha Basin > Hydrology > Water Quality > Environmental Threats > Human Impacts >
       Cultural Features > Coastal Habitats > Tributaries > Plants > Animals > Sapelo Island
Coastal Habitats > Beaches > Estuaries > Barrier Islands > Marshes > Uplands > Tides > Recreation
General Interest Site
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Superficially, the marshes appear uniform, but there is in fact a great deal of heterogeneity present. The cross-section of a marsh (above) shows the variations in height of Spartina and the gradient in elevation that is present in a typical Georgia salt marsh. Although variations in elevation over much of the marsh surface are in the centimeter range and are not represented on topographic maps of the area, the small variations that do occur produce gradients in physical and chemical conditions in marsh sediments that affect plant growth and zonation.

Typically, marsh vegetation on and near creek banks grows most robustly, averaging as much as 2 m in height. At a distance from the creek banks, the grass is of intermediate height, with the shortest grass being found at the greatest distance from a creek or at relatively high elevations.

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