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Kopački rit is a floodplain that developed due to the activities of two large rivers, the Danube and the Drava. Significant flood areas exist in the northern, southern and western surrounding parts of the Nature park that stretch from Batina up north, to Bijelo Brdo down south and Donji Miholjac towards west. Geographically speaking, Kopački rit covers the area between the 45° 32′ – 45° 47′ northern geographical latitude and 18° 45′ – 18° 59′ eastern geographical longitude. The altitudes of Baranja do not exceed 250 m, and the Nature Park is at the lowest altitude starting from only 78 m above sea level (the bottom of Kopačko Lake) to 86 m above sea level.

Kopački rit has a typical relief structure because of the river’s water activity and the floodwaters that flood the area. Rivers create banks and islands called “ade” and armbands called ‘dunavac’ or ‘old Drava’ in their live streams. On the other hand, the water in the floodplain deposits sediments in one place but deepens the ground in another, so the whole area obtains a specific undulate appearance. That is how ponds (depressions) and beams (higher grounds) were created and stretch hundreds of meters next to one another. Ponds and beams are narrow and long and have a specific curved appearance from the sky. The altitude difference between ponds and beams is 8 m. max. The ponds meet by the ends through a natural channel or so-called ‘fok’ and enter “Dunavac” or the Danube. The beams fill and empty the ponds. “Foks” were artificially deepened and the trenched canals took over the “foks” function.

This kind of pond and beam layout gives the area a unique appearance. The entire floodplain obtains a delta kind of look and is extremely exceptional because the Danube creates a so-called “inland delta” in its middle stream with the assistance of the Drava. A phenomenon like this is not notable for other European rivers in this form and therewith gives this area a global significance.

A short promotional documentary film about Kopacki rit, one the largest bird reservates in Europe, located near Osijek, Croatia.

More info: http://www.kopacki-rit.com/indexen.html

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