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Beach cusps are one of the strangest natural formation along the water’s edge. They are made up of a rhythmic pattern of small cusps and bays, with the cusps — the pointed horns formed by two intersecting arcs — directed towards the ocean, separated by gentler sloping bays.

The horns are made up of coarser materials and the embayment contains finer grain sediment. They are most noticeable on shorelines that have coarse material like pebbles, however, they can occur on beaches with sediment of any size. They also seem to form best when the beach is steep, and regular non-breaking waves arrive nearly at right angles to the beach.

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Beach cusps on the South coast of England, in Dorset. Photo credit

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© Amusing Planet, 2015.


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