Author ORCID Identifier

Document Type


Publication Date



Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design


Agricultural & Extension Education


A representative watershed was instrumented with five gauging sites (n = 5), partitioning the catchment into five nested-scale sub-watersheds. Four physiochemical variables were monitored: water temperature, pH, total dissolved solids (TDS), and dissolved oxygen (DO). Data were collected four days per week from October 2010–May 2014 at each gauging site. Statistical analyses indicated significant differences (p < 0.05) between nearly every monitoring site pairing for each physiochemical variable. The water temperature regime displayed a threshold/step-change condition, with an upshifted and more variable regime attributable to the impacts of urban land uses. TDS, pH, and DO displayed similar spatiotemporal trends, with increasing median concentrations from site #1 (agriculture) to #3 (mixed-use urban) and decreasing median concentrations from site #3 to #5 (suburban). Decreasing concentrations and increasing streamflow volume with stream distance, suggest the contribution of dilution processes to the physiochemical regime of the creek below urban site #3. DO concentrations exceeded water quality standards on an average of 31% of observation days. Results showed seasonal trends for each physiochemical parameter, with higher TDS, pH, and DO during the cold season (November–April) relative to the warm season (May–October). Multivariate modeling results emphasize the importance of the pH/DO relationship in these systems, and demonstrate the potential utility of a simple two factor model (water temperature and pH) in accurately predicting DO. Collectively, results highlight the interacting influences of natural (autotrophic photosynthesis, organic detritus loading) and anthropogenic (road salt application) factors on the physiochemical regime of mixed-land-use watersheds.

Source Citation

Kellner, E., & Hubbart, J. (2017). Advancing Understanding of the Surface Water Quality Regime of Contemporary Mixed-Land-Use Watersheds: An Application of the Experimental Watershed Method. Hydrology, 4(2), 31.


This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited


To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.