A hierarchical model of daily stream temperature for regional predictions
- Subject Areas
- Aquaculture, Fisheries and Fish Science, Statistics, Freshwater Biology, Natural Resource Management
- Stream Temperature, Hierarchical Model, Northeast Region
- This is an open access article, free of all copyright, made available under the Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication. This work may be freely reproduced, distributed, transmitted, modified, built upon, or otherwise used by anyone for any lawful purpose.
- Cite this article
- 2018. A hierarchical model of daily stream temperature for regional predictions. PeerJ Preprints 6:e27069v1 https://doi.org/10.7287/peerj.preprints.27069v1
Stream temperature is an important exogenous factor influencing populations of stream organisms such as fish, amphibians, and invertebrates. Many states regulate stream protections based on temperature. Therefore, stream temperature models are important, particularly for estimating thermal regimes in unsampled space and time. To help meet this need, we developed a hierarchical model of daily stream temperature and applied it across the eastern United States. Our model accommodates many of the key challenges associated with daily stream temperature models including the lagged response of water temperature to changes in air temperature, incomplete and widely-varying observed time series, spatial and temporal autocorrelation, and the inclusion of predictors other than air temperature. We used 248,517 daily stream temperature records from 1,352 streams to fit our model and 100,909 records were withheld for model validation. Our model had a root mean squared error of 0.61 C for the fitted data and 2.03 C for the validation data, indicating excellent fit and good predictive power for understanding regional temperature patterns. We then used our model to predict daily stream temperatures from 1980 - 2015 for all streams <200 km2 from Maine to Virginia. From these, we calculated derived stream metrics including mean July temperature, mean summer temperature, and the thermal sensitivity of each stream reach to changes in air temperature. Although generally water temperature follows similar latitudinal and altitudinal patterns as air temperature, there are considerable differences at the reach scale based on landscape and land-use factors.
This is a preprint submission to PeerJ Preprints