Synthesizing ecohydrology models as a management tool
August 2012 - June 2013
- South-Central Climate Science Center
To create effective conservation and management strategies, we first need a comprehensive understanding of the connectivity, interaction and feedbacks between climate, hydrology, and aquatic ecosystems. Ecohydrology emphasizes consideration of the interface between hydrological and ecological sciences, and attempts to reveal the connectivity, dual regulation, and feedback of climatic, biological and hydrological systems at different spatial and temporal scales. Understanding the simulation potential of these models as well as identifying the benefits and limitations of each model is key to assisting the goal of holistic management of our freshwater resources under increasing climatic variability, land-use alteration, upland and riparian vegetation change, and artificial flow regulation.The objective of this project is to conduct a complete synthesis and systematically evaluate the prevailing hydrological and ecological models, their data requirements and the suitability of each model to simulate the hydrologic regime while addressing changes in the ecology of stream systems. We will focus on models that have relevant application to the southern Great Plains region which encompasses grassland, semiarid woodland, forest and coastal-estuary ecosystems. We will identify the capabilities of each model to portray uncertainty in input parameters and model predictions.