(How do I tag] this wave protection and wetland?

The water is a river section near the coast; the water is semi-salty and has tides. No surf waves, but there are constant waves from passing ships and boats.

A protection of loose stones and small rock is present all along the river bank. The water passes around and over the stones, so it’s not meant to stop the water.

At the land side is a kind of wetland with bush, brush, low growing trees, also grasses and herbs, with tidal and intermittent overflow. Some sections are always under water, a kind of tidal channels; some sections are almost permanently dry.


  1. is this a type of breakwater, even though it’s not meant to break surf waves?
  2. What subtype of natural=wetland is this?

I rather think that the stones ensure that the “island” is not eroded. The small edge around can be entered as natura=shingle.

Just from the aerial photo I would say that it is a reedbed. (natural=wetland wetland=reedbed)

There is reed, but actually it’s more like this:
So mainly short willows and woody underbrush, mixed with much less grass/reed/herbacious plants.

The flooding is a combination of tides from the see, and river water coming nilly willy from higher grounds.

Hm… it’s definitily not a natural formation, and it’s not “deposited and shaped by movement of water”. It is put there deliberately as a ridge protecting the wetland from the waves and currents.

This looks like riprap much too large to be shingle! I’m aware of a lot of places with riprap in place (the local river, breakwaters in the Mersey Estuary), but it seems not to be tagged.

Dawlish Warren , Rip Rap - geograph.org.uk - 1235750

The pollarded willows would be described as an osier bed (particularly if the withies are cut regularly). There’s limited use of natural=scrub, scrub=osier_bed rather than natural=wetland although many osier beds will be damp they are characteristically on gley soils. In the UK in river flood plains a lot of the underlying surface will be alluvium over gravels deposited by the river, but there are occasional lenses of a different composition (presumably places where the river never meandered) which are poorly drained and not much use for agriculture. Many of these were used as a local source of willows from early times (a couple of my local ones are documented in Domesday Book, 1086).