Minecraft Wiki
Advertisement

A river biome.

A river is a common biome. Rivers can serve as borders between various other biomes, and usually lead to oceans, although they can also form loops.

Description[]

Rivers are thin, lengthy biomes that frequently generate across the world. They typically serve as a division between two different biomes, but can also split a single biome in two. They are filled with water up to sea level, though rivers may run dry in certain areas due to higher than usual elevation. Exposed grass in rivers takes on a bluish-green hue and oak trees can rarely generate along with spare grass. Riverbeds consist of dirt, sand, gravel, and clay, and are one of the few places where clay generates, alongside lakes, swamp marshes, ocean hilltops, and lush caves. Seagrass generates atop the riverbed, and sugar cane occasionally generates on the riverbank. Neither passive nor hostile‌[BE only] mobs (except drowned) spawn within river biomes themselves, but frequently wander into them from the surrounding biomes if they can spawn there. Drowned can spawn underwater, as can salmon and squid. Rivers can vary a lot in width and depth, in generally flat areas rivers are usually around 10 blocks deep but in mountainous regions rivers can reach over 30 blocks in depth which is comparable to deep oceans. Rivers in mountains ranges can for fjords or be replaced by another biome forming a saddle valley. Sometimes rivers can also generate as lakes with small islands.

When generated between two high-elevation areas, such as mountains and hills, river biomes may pose a fall damage hazard, and deep rivers can also spawn drowned frequently, but are otherwise mostly harmless.


Variants[]

There are two different river biomes.

River[]

River
River.png
Type

Aquatic

Rarity

Common

Temperature

0.5

Structures

Disks
Random patches

Blocks

Water
Grass Block
Dirt
Clay
Sand
Gravel
Sugar cane
Seagrass

Grass color


 #8EB971

Foliage color


 #71A74D

Water color


 #3F76E4
[JE only]

 #0084FF
[BE only]

The standard river variant. Salmon and squid may spawn here. This is the third most common biome in the game, only behind plains and forest. The grass color is turquoise green, similar to the meadow and birch forest biomes. Vegetation is sparse, with occasional oak trees.

MobSpawn chanceGroup size
Hostile category
Spider100616.254
Zombie95616.254
Drowned100616.251
Zombie Villager5616.251
Skeleton100616.254
Creeper100616.254
Slime[note 1]100616.254
Enderman10616.251–4
Witch5616.251
Spider Jockey1616.251
Chicken Jockey0.25616.251
Water creature category
Squid221–4
Ambient category
Bat10108
Underground water creature category
Glow Squid10102–4
Water ambient category
Salmon551–5
  1. Spawn attempt succeeds only in slime chunks.

In Bedrock Edition:

MobSpawn chanceGroup size
Water category
Salmon16163–5
Passive category
Squid882–4
Hostile category
Drowned552–4


Frozen River[]

Frozen River
Frozen River.png
Type

Aquatic/Snowy

Rarity

Uncommon

Temperature

0.0

Blocks

Ice
Water
Grass Block
Dirt
Clay
Sand
Gravel

Grass color


 #80B497

Foliage color


 #60A17B

Water color


 #3938C9
[JE only]

 #185390
[BE only]

Frozen Rivers replace regular rivers in regions with snowy biomes. As the name implies, the top layer of water is entirely frozen, though below the ice is the usual sand, gravel, dirt, and clay, though seagrass does not generate on the riverbed. While sugar cane can generate alongside a frozen riverbank, it quickly uproots itself after generation due to the water being frozen. Oak trees can still generate here if this biome generates on land, despite being a snowy biome.

In Bedrock Edition, along with salmon and drowned, strays, rabbits, and polar bears can spawn in frozen rivers. No other hostile mobs can spawn, even underground.

In Java Edition, frozen rivers use the same mob spawning chances as rivers for water and ambient categories. As for the others:

MobSpawn chanceGroup size
Hostile category
Spider100517.254
Zombie95517.254
Drowned1517.251
Zombie Villager5517.251
Skeleton100517.254
Creeper100517.254
Slime[note 1]100517.254
Enderman10517.251–4
Witch5517.251
Spider Jockey1517.251
Chicken Jockey0.25517.251
  1. Spawn attempt succeeds only in slime chunks.

In Bedrock Edition, frozen rivers use the same mob spawning chances as rivers for water categories. As for the others:

MobSpawn chanceGroup size
Hostile category
Drowned51252–4
Stray961251–2
Skeleton241251–2
Passive category
Squid8132–4
Rabbit[note 1]4132–3
Polar Bear1131–2
  1. 80% of spawned rabbits are white and 20% are black and white.


Data values[]

ID[]

Java Edition:

NameIdentifierTranslation key
Riverriverbiome.minecraft.river
Frozen Riverfrozen_riverbiome.minecraft.frozen_river

Bedrock Edition:

NameIdentifierNumeric ID
[No displayed name]river7
[No displayed name]frozen_river11

History[]

This section is missing information about Legacy Console Edition. 
Please expand the section to include this information. Further details may exist on the talk page.
Java Edition Beta
August 18, 2011Notch tweeted a screenshot of a revamped river biome.
1.8Pre-releaseAdded rivers as a separate biome. Previously, were generated as part of the terrain generation algorithm.
Java Edition
1.0.0Beta 1.9 PrereleaseAdded frozen river.
1.1318w08bAdded salmon, which spawn in rivers.
18w11aAdded drowneds, which spawn in rivers.
18w14aSeagrass now generates in rivers.
18w16aThe ID of frozen river has been changed from FrozenRiver to Frozen River.
1.13.118w31aSquids now only spawn in oceans and rivers, making them slightly more common in rivers, as there are fewer places elsewhere for them to spawn.
1.18experimental snapshot 4River biomes are less likely to form a steep, dry river gorge in mountainous terrain. Instead, they either carve a fjord through it, or they raise the terrain to form a valley.
Rivers that go through swamps tend to be more shallow.
experimental snapshot 5Rivers are less likely to be super deep or get choked off in flat areas.
Rivers tend to get shallow and merge with swamps instead of carving through them.
Pocket Edition Alpha
v0.1.0Added biomes, including rivers.
v0.13.0build 1Added rabbits, which can spawn in frozen rivers.
v0.15.0build 1Added strays, which spawn in frozen river biomes.
Pocket Edition
1.0.0alpha 0.17.0.1Added polar bears, which can spawn in frozen rivers.
Bedrock Edition
1.4.0beta 1.2.13.8Added drowned, which spawn in river biomes.
beta 1.2.14.2Added salmon, which spawn in rivers.
Rivers now generate with seagrass.
1.13.0beta 1.13.0.9Squid can now spawn in rivers.

Trivia[]

  • Lakes can technically still generate in the waters of rivers and frozen rivers, when either are used as buffet worlds. This can be more clearly seen in frozen river worlds, as holes in the ice.
  • Regular rivers can still generate cutting through frozen rivers.
  • Both types of rivers override ravines at or close to the surface level, causing the ravine to be abruptly cut off by a wall of stone. However, if the ravine is long enough, it may continue on the other side of the river.
    • Oddly, ravines can generate underground in river biomes without being cut off.

Gallery[]

See also[]

Advertisement