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Compilation of streamflow statistics calculated from daily mean streamflow data collected during water years 1901–2015 for selected U.S. Geological Survey streamgages

October 9, 2017

Streamflow statistics are needed by decision makers for many planning, management, and design activities. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) StreamStats Web application provides convenient access to streamflow statistics for many streamgages by accessing the underlying StreamStatsDB database. In 2016, non-interpretive streamflow statistics were compiled for streamgages located throughout the Nation and stored in StreamStatsDB for use with StreamStats and other applications. Two previously published USGS computer programs that were designed to help calculate streamflow statistics were updated to better support StreamStats as part of this effort. These programs are named “GNWISQ” (Get National Water Information System Streamflow (Q) files), updated to version 1.1.1, and “QSTATS” (Streamflow (Q) Statistics), updated to version 1.1.2.

Statistics for 20,438 streamgages that had 1 or more complete years of record during water years 1901 through 2015 were calculated from daily mean streamflow data; 19,415 of these streamgages were within the conterminous United States. About 89 percent of the 20,438 streamgages had 3 or more years of record, and about 65 percent had 10 or more years of record. Drainage areas of the 20,438 streamgages ranged from 0.01 to 1,144,500 square miles. The magnitude of annual average streamflow yields (streamflow per square mile) for these streamgages varied by almost six orders of magnitude, from 0.000029 to 34 cubic feet per second per square mile. About 64 percent of these streamgages did not have any zero-flow days during their available period of record. The 18,122 streamgages with 3 or more years of record were included in the StreamStatsDB compilation so they would be available via the StreamStats interface for user-selected streamgages. All the statistics are available in a USGS ScienceBase data release.