‏Spatiotemporal assessment of the hydrologic river health index variations in Ardabil Province Watersheds

Document Type : Research Article


1 MA Student, Department of Range and Watershed Management, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Mohaghegh Ardabili, Iran

2 Associate Professor, Department of Water Engineering, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Mohaghegh Ardabili, Iran


Assessment of river health can be used as a tool for environmental flow estimation and quantification of the amount, timing and required water flow quality for permanence of river ecosystems. The current  study aims to determine the spatial and temporal changes of rivers health with an emphasis on hydrologic indicators by using statistical tests in Ardabil province. For this purpose, the daily discharge data of 24 hydrometric stations with the period of 1367-1390 was used for river health analysis. In addition, the non-parametric Mann-Kendall test and Sen's estimator method were performed to determine the presence or absence of positive and negative trends at different statistical levels. Also, after dividing the existed study span into four periods, the Kruskal–Wallis test was applied for the investigation of temporal variations and the existence of differences between short-term periods. Results showed a significant decreasing trend of river health in studied stations (13 stations from 24 stations). Sula and Firuzabad stations had significant increasing trend and in other remained stations, no significant trend was identified. According to the results obtained from the maps of spatial variability of river health, maximum and minimum change of river health indicators were observed  in the central part, and northern and southern parts of the province, respectively. Generally, it can be said that, recently, the overall changes as well as reduction in hydrologic flow health have been more compared to the past which can be associated with increase of exploitation intensity from surface water resources as well as reduction in the water yield due to climate change.


Main Subjects

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Volume 4, Issue 2
June 2017
Pages 379-393
  • Receive Date: 31 October 2016
  • Revise Date: 12 February 2017
  • Accept Date: 18 February 2017
  • First Publish Date: 22 June 2017