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Open AccessArticle

Multiple Temporal Scales Assessment in the Hydrological Response of Small Mediterranean-Climate Catchments

1
Mediterranean Ecogeomorphological and Hydrological Connectivity Research Team, Department of Geography, University of the Balearic Islands, Ctra. Valldemossa km 7.5, 07122 Palma, Balearic Islands, Spain
2
Institute of Agro—Environmental and Water Economy Research—Inagea, University of the Balearic Islands, Ctra. Valldemossa km 7.5, 07122 Palma, Balearic Islands, Spain
3
Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IDAEA), Spanish Research Council (CSIC), Jordi Girona 18, 08034 Barcelona, Spain
4
Estación Experimental de Aula Dei, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (EEAD-CSIC), 50192 Zaragoza, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2020, 12(1), 299; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12010299
Received: 13 November 2019 / Revised: 10 January 2020 / Accepted: 14 January 2020 / Published: 19 January 2020
Mediterranean-climate catchments are characterized by significant spatial and temporal hydrological variability caused by the interaction of natural as well human-induced abiotic and biotic factors. This study investigates the non-linearity of rainfall-runoff relationship at multiple temporal scales in representative small Mediterranean-climate catchments (i.e., <10 km2) to achieve a better understanding of their hydrological response. The rainfall-runoff relationship was evaluated in 43 catchments at annual and event—203 events in 12 of these 43 catchments—scales. A linear rainfall-runoff relationship was observed at an annual scale, with a higher scatter in pervious (R2: 0.47) than impervious catchments (R2: 0.82). Larger scattering was observed at the event scale, although pervious lithology and agricultural land use promoted significant rainfall-runoff linear relations in winter and spring. These relationships were particularly analysed during five hydrological years in the Es Fangar catchment (3.35 km2; Mallorca, Spain) as a temporal downscaling to assess the intra-annual variability, elucidating whether antecedent wetness conditions played a significant role in runoff generation. The assessment of rainfall-runoff relationships under contrasted lithology, land use and seasonality is a useful approach to improve the hydrological modelling of global change scenarios in small catchments where the linearity and non-linearity of the hydrological response—at multiple temporal scales—can inherently co-exist in Mediterranean-climate catchments. View Full-Text
Keywords: rainfall-runoff; multiple temporal scales; non-linearity; small catchments; Mediterranean rainfall-runoff; multiple temporal scales; non-linearity; small catchments; Mediterranean
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Fortesa, J.; Latron, J.; García-Comendador, J.; Tomàs-Burguera, M.; Company, J.; Calsamiglia, A.; Estrany, J. Multiple Temporal Scales Assessment in the Hydrological Response of Small Mediterranean-Climate Catchments. Water 2020, 12, 299.

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