What is a polder?

What is a polder?

A polder is a piece of low-lying land reclaimed from the sea or river and protected by a structure, such as a dyke in the Netherlands. 

If coastal, it is generally tidal, which means that the tides come and go. If riverine, the polders are usually protected from erosion.

There are three types of polders. 

One type is reclaimed land, such as a lake or seabed.

A second type of polder is a flood plain, separated from the sea or river by a dyke. 

A third type of polder is a marsh surrounded by water.

A polder is where the wetlands are drained so that developers can build on it. 

However, many animals live in polders because of the water, and the land between the sea and inland. Many coastal animals live in these habitats.

Location of photographs: Bay of Mont-Saint-Michel, Normandy, France

Photographer: Martina Nicolls


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