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Shepard's classic paper on delta-front gullies on the Mississippi delta slope initiated a host of modern studies that revealed the complexity and importance of subaqueous mass-movement processes. Differential weighting and diapirism, rotational slumps, retrogressive slides and their gullies and depositional lobes are but a few of the processes that mold the morphology of the delta-front area. These instabilities form on extremely low-angle slopes (often less than 0.5°) and are responsible for the transport of large volumes of shallow-water sediment to deeper environments.

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