Beach Fieldwork Report Krystel Parras, 8D

On Tuesday the 28th of march, year 8 went on a fieldwork expedition to three different sites to investigate the landforms and management strategies in place here. The purpose of the fieldwork was to help us enhance our understanding of coastal landforms and management strategies.

Bells Beach

Physical features at Bells beach

At Bells Beach, the erosional landmarks included the two headlands and the wave cut platform. A depositional landform was the beach. The tops of the headlands and cliffs were well covered with vegetation. The beach itself was devoid of plants. The waves were constructive, and were 2 metres tall, breaking at an average 5.5 per minute. The beach was wide and even.

The view from a lookout shows us the headland in the distance, an erosional landform, as well as the closer one with a wave cut platform.
A feild sketch completed at the site and coloured in at home.
Management strategies and human features

Bells beach had an extensive revegitation project, as well as staircases so people didn't ruin the effort to revegitate on their way down to the beach; fences for this reason also; bins to limit littering; and signs so that people were aware of these management strategies. To improve, they could pave the parking lot so that the dust from the gravel doesn't go everywhere, and they could put more bins to limit litter.

Anglesea Beach

Physical features at Anglesea Beach

The waves at Anglesea beach were both constructive and destructive. The wave frequency was 9 waves per minute, and they were approximately 0.5 metres tall. There was no longshore drift at this beach. One of the depositional landforms at this beach was the actual sediment that made up the beach. One erosional landform was the headland. The beach was considerably wide, and there was no noticeable slope. The top of the headland was densely vegetated as well as the land further back from the beach.

A field sketch completed at the site and coloured in at home.
Management strategies and human features

At Anglesea beach, the management strategies were very similar to that of Bells Beach, considering they were managed by the same council. Here there was a car park and toilet block, revegitation to prevent sand dunes from becoming blowout dunes and running these structures; regulations and penalties; fences to keep people from entering marked areas; pathways to guide people to safe places. The revegitation project was extremely successful in keeping the sand dunes together and protecting the car park and playground. There was adequate signage and a good amount of bins. The fact that the beach was near a grassy area made it easier for people to eat in a place away from sand and then go to the beach. There were benches and tables at the grassy area, meaning the council knew this and wanted to make it easy for people to relax away from the sand.

This is a river leading into the ocean. A landform that could form at the mouth of a river is a tombolo. This is not present at Anglesea beach.

Point Roadknight

Physical features at Point Roadknight

The waves at point roadknight were destructive. I could tell this because of the small swash as well as the results of erosion. There was a significant longshore drift, moving at an average speed of 11 metres per minute. The wind was coming from a SE direction. A man made feature was the boatramp in the middle of the beach that acted as an unintentional groyne.

Management strategies and Human features

The boat ramp acted as an unintentional groyne. Other management strategies on this beach include fences so people don't get hit by eroding cliff parts or damage vegetation; car parks so people don't park on the beach; signs and penalties so people don't break council regulations; walking trails so people don't ruin the vegetation; a box for fishing line to be dumped into so it didnt end up in the sea or on the sand where it could hurt somebody.

Longshore drift at point roadknight
This photo is taken from the boat ramp on the beach. It is to the left when you are facing the sea. The beach here is narrow, and there is a fence in place for safety as the coast has been severely eroded by the sea.
This is the other side of the beach from the boat ramp. Here, the beach is wider and there is more sand.
Why are the two sides different?
The two sides separated by the boat ramp are different due to longshore drift; the process in which sand gets pushed along the coast in a particular direction due to wind and wave direction. Longshore drift has pushed the sand up against the boat ramp from the left, and away from the boat ramp on the right. For this reason there is more sand on the right side than the left.

Evaluation:beach management

Best managed beach: Anglesea beach

Anglesea beach was the best managed as it was the only one with a playground and paved car park. The revegitation project was extremely successful in keeping the sand dunes together and protecting the car park and playground. There was adequate signage and a good amount of bins. The fact that the beach was near a grassy area made it easier for people to eat in a place away from sand and then go to the beach. There were benches and tables at the grassy area, meaning the council knew this and wanted to make it easy for people to relax away from the sand.

Adequately managed beach: bells beach

Bells beach was adequately managed. There was a large revegitation project as well as other strategies put in place, but to improve, they could pave the parking lot so that the dust from the gravel does not go everywhere, and they could put more bins to limit litter.

Worst managed beach: point roadknight

Point Roadknight was the worst managed beach of the three. There was no toilet block, the fence to stop eroding cliff parts from falling onto people was too close to the cliff and wouldn't have made any difference. The boatramp ended up acting as a groyne by accident, and the council made no effort to put any other hard engineering in place.

Evaluation: fieldwork

What worked well?

Having the booklets was a good idea, as it was a place where I could keep all my information together. I thought the field sketches I made were accurate and helped with my report.

What could be improved?

I forgot my hat on the day which resulted in a sunburn on my; but to to with the actual feildwork, I did not bring a device to take pictures because I don't have a phone that can, so I had to ask for pictures from my classmates. For this reason I didn't have photos that I took myself.

How could i improve for next time?

I need to make sure that I pack all the right equipment including sunscreen and a hat. I also need to bring a camera, or a phone with one.

How would i change the fieldwork?

1. I would have the booklets handed out at the start of the bus trip so that the students could already start thinking about the fieldwork.

2. We would make sure there was enough time to go down to each and every beach.

3. We would collect data on a number of different occasions to make it more accurate, or if this wasn't possible we would ask what the boys at Gottleibsen house obtained for their wave count, frequency and longshore drift test.

Credits:

Created with images by Sean MacEntee - "Beach" • mjr3107 - "beach island tropic" • LoneWombatMedia - "beach australia ocean" • SamCurry - "australia shipwreck coast" • wka - "Beach" • mike from aus - "Spring Sunshine"

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