Biological weathering is also known as organic weathering. Animals, insects, plants, and humans are the main agents of this type of weathering. This is because all the organic or biological matter is made of oxygen and water which may lead to chemical reactions in rocks, resulting in their decomposition and physical disintegration. 3 Types of Biological weathering occurs in the following ways:
Types of Biological Weathering
Burrowing animals: such as rodents and moles loosen the ground or surface materials resulting in their physical disintegration. When animals die, their decaying bodies release chemicals that also lead to the disintegration of rocks.
Vegetation: Rocks may disintegrate when the roots of trees reach deep into them. However, trees may also prevent the disintegration of rocks by protecting them from direct exposure to sunlight and wind.
Humans: Humans are the most active agents of physical and chemical weathering. Mining, construction of roads and buildings, agriculture, and dumping of chemicals lead to both physical and chemical disintegration.
The large-scale movement of waste materials, derived from weathering of bedrock, down a slope, is known as mass wasting or mass movement. Water, wind, and glaciers are the main agents of mass wasting. There is rapid movement of rocks on steep slopes. Mass movements can be classified into slow and rapid movements.
Mass wasting also creates various landforms. Landslides on the Himalayan hillslopes have created many lakes. Some other landforms created as a result of mass wasting are ripples, escarpments, terraces, meanders, and scars.
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