THE GODAVARI DELTA
Delta ID # 13.
Drainage basin: Peninsular India.
Depositional basin: Bay of Bengal.
Air temperature range: oC to oC
Mean wave height:
Drainage Basin area:
Acquired: NRSA, India.
Acquired: NASA, USA.
Contributed by Professor George F. Hart, LSU. Hart, 1999.
Photographic album of Godavari Delta slides.
The climate of the Godavari drainage basin has high humidity throughout the year effected by the northeast and southwest monsoons. The delta region is semi-arid with an average annual rainfall of 1042 mm and a maximum temperature in May of 37.3oC. The coldest month is January with a mean daily maximum temperature of 26.9oC and a mean daily minimum temperature of 19.2oC.
The upper reaches of the Godavari drainage basin is occupied by the Deccan Traps containing the minerals hypersthene, augite, diopside, enstatite, magnetite, epidote, biotite, zircon, rutile, apatite and chlorite [K. Srinivasa Rao, 1993]. The middle part of the basin is principally Archean granites and Dharwars composed of phyllites, quartzites, amphiboles and granites. The downstream part of the middle basin is occupied mainly by the Cuddapah and Vindhyan metasediments and and rocks of the Gondwana Group. The Cuddapahs and Vindhyan are quartzites, sandstones, shales, limestones and conglomerates. The Gondwanas are principally detritals with some thick coal seams. The eastern Ghats dominate the lower part of the drainage basin and are formed mainly from the Khondalites which include quartz- feldspar- garnet- silllimanite gneisses, quartzite, calc-granulites and Charnockites [Dutt, 1986]. In the coastal region the Tertiary Rajahmundry sandstones crop out.
The Godavari is the largest river system in Peninsular India. Arising in the Western Ghats [1620 m AMSL] near Nasik it passes through Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa and Andhra Pradesh before debouching into the Bay of Bengal near Kakinada. on the Andhra coast. There are ten major distributaries flowing through well established drainage networks.
There are three main distributaries viz: Gautami Godavari, Vasishta Godavari and the Vainateyam. The first two branch at Rajahmundry and then the Vainateyam splits from the Vasishta Godavari at Gannavaram 22 km from the coastline.
A major feature of the marginal coastline is the development of the Kakinada sand spit at Neelarevu Point, which probably commenced in the 1860's obtaining it's present form by1878 [Mahadevan & Prasada Rao, 1958] The spit isolated Kakinada Bay as a shallow inlet which is being infilled by sedimentary contributions from a variety of streams Coringa, Gaderu and Pillavarava