MARTYN F. CHILLMAID / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MARTYN F. CHILLMAID / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Shale rocks. Shale rocks stained by iron oxide leaching out of the rock into a stream. Here, iron compounds in the soil and rock have dissolved in rainwater and have been carried through the rock. As these iron compounds leach out of the rock they are oxidized by atmospheric oxygen to form iron oxide (Fe.O3) giving the red colour. Shale rocks form when particles of pre-existing rock are eroded and deposited as sediment elsewhere.
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