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Comparison between two statistically based methods, and two physically based models developed to compute daily mean streamflow at ungaged locations in the Cedar River Basin, Iowa

June 17, 2013

A variety of individuals from water resource managers to recreational users need streamflow information for planning and decisionmaking at locations where there are no streamgages. To address this problem, two statistically based methods, the Flow Duration Curve Transfer method and the Flow Anywhere method, were developed for statewide application and the two physically based models, the Precipitation Runoff Modeling-System and the Soil and Water Assessment Tool, were only developed for application for the Cedar River Basin. Observed and estimated streamflows for the two methods and models were compared for goodness of fit at 13 streamgages modeled in the Cedar River Basin by using the Nash-Sutcliffe and the percent-bias efficiency values.

Based on median and mean Nash-Sutcliffe values for the 13 streamgages the Precipitation Runoff Modeling-System and Soil and Water Assessment Tool models appear to have performed similarly and better than Flow Duration Curve Transfer and Flow Anywhere methods. Based on median and mean percent bias values, the Soil and Water Assessment Tool model appears to have generally overestimated daily mean streamflows, whereas the Precipitation Runoff Modeling-System model and statistical methods appear to have underestimated daily mean streamflows. The Flow Duration Curve Transfer method produced the lowest median and mean percent bias values and appears to perform better than the other models.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2013
Title Comparison between two statistically based methods, and two physically based models developed to compute daily mean streamflow at ungaged locations in the Cedar River Basin, Iowa
DOI 10.3133/sir20135111
Authors S. Mike Linhart, Jon F. Nania, Daniel E. Christiansen, Kasey J. Hutchinson, Curtis L. Sanders, Stacey A. Archfield
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Scientific Investigations Report
Series Number 2013-5111
Index ID sir20135111
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Iowa Water Science Center

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