a type of relief characteristic of elevated plains areas of platform regions, which over a long period of development have been subjected to normal erosion and dissected by temporary stream channels (hollows, gulches, and ravines). A subsequent stage in development of this relief may witness intensified erosion in the form of gullies brought on by the felling of forests and the plowing up of land. The wedges between the gullies are difficult to plow, and therefore, as the gullies grow, the fields retreat from the brows of the ravines. As a consequence of headward erosion, the gullies extend to the divide areas and branch out. The floor of a mature gully usually conforms to that of the ravine into which it enters, and the entry is usually marked by an alluvial fan. The density of the gully-ravine network varies widely. For example, in the European USSR, in the Central Russian Upland and the Volga Upland, it is 0.7–2.5 km per sq km; the smallest distance between parallel gullies where the gullies empty into ravines is about 100 m. Shelterbelts, contour farming, and crop rotation are means of preventing the growth of the gully-ravine network.
D. L. ARMAND