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Map scale

Relationship between a certain distance on the map and the corresponding distance on the ground (e.g. 1:10,000, which means 1 cm on the map equals to 10,000 cm or 100 m on the ground); the scale is usually located in the legend box of a map.


A transition zone between water and land usually covered by grass.

Mass movement

Dislodgement and downslope transport of soil and rock material as a unit under direct gravitational stress; includes slow displacements, such as creep and solifluction, and rapid movements such as landslides, rock slides, earthflows, debris flows and avalanches; water, ice and to a lesser extent air usually play an important role in the process.

Moderately fine textured

Texture group consisting of clay loam, sandy clay loam and silty clay loam textures; see also soil texture.


Representative vertical section taken from vertical face of a soil profile pit or section, which represents arrangement of soil horizons; there are various methods of how to take and conserve soil monoliths.

Munsell Color System

Colour designation system that specifies the relative degrees of the three simple variables of colour: hue (wavelength), value (degree of lightness or darkness), and chroma (purity or strength). For example: 10YR 6/4 is a colour (of soil) with a hue = 10YR, value = 6, and chroma = 4.

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