The natural environment of watercourses

Vegetation growing along watercourses plays a major role in the country. It is a habitat that provides animals with food, safe shelter, and for many species with breeding potential. In addition to these functions by connecting several different natural habitats, it acts as a bio corridor through which organisms migrate. Among other things, they have the opportunity to come into contact with another population. This feature is very important, especially in heavily used countries.

Vegetation also helps stabilize banks, thus protecting them from erosion, draining nutrients, and purifying water. Bacteria on plant roots, in turn, eliminate nitrates from field fertilization, thus protecting water quality.

If the riverbed is very narrow, vegetation can cause frequent flooding. In case the watercourse is wide enough, the occurrence of vegetation along the stream has a negligible effect on floods. In the first instance, regular large-scale vegetation removal is justified. In the second instance, should it be necessary to reduce the risk of flooding the surrounding land, a selective mowing of the vegetation suffices while leaving a sinusoidal flow in the middle of the riverbed. Such maintenance allows free flow even in the event of an elevated water level while maintaining a high degree of biodiversity and significantly reducing bank erosion.

Removing all vegetation can reduce the risk of flooding in the given locality, but often increases the risk downstream.