Standard Article

126 Modeling Recession Curves and Low Streamflows

Part 11. Rainfall-Runoff Modeling

  1. Charles Kroll

Published Online: 15 APR 2006

DOI: 10.1002/0470848944.hsa134

Encyclopedia of Hydrological Sciences

Encyclopedia of Hydrological Sciences

How to Cite

Kroll, C. 2006. Modeling Recession Curves and Low Streamflows. Encyclopedia of Hydrological Sciences. 11:126.

Author Information

  1. Environmental Resources and Forest Engineering, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF), Syracuse, NY, US

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 APR 2006


Low streamflow events are critical periods for water quantity and water quality management purposes. During most low streamflow events, the stream is comprised solely of groundwater sources. This section focuses on both theoretical and empirical methods for modeling groundwater discharge to a stream and the resulting streamflow recession. A review is provided of solutions to the Boussinesq equation for hillslope discharge, and methods for determining when specific solutions may be most appropriate. In addition, how to estimate baseflow recession constants that aid in the modeling of groundwater discharge to streams, has been discussed. This involves the presentation of numerous methods to parameterize baseflow recession characteristics, how best to represent error in these models, and experiments that have been performed to determine the most appropriate methodology.


  • Boussinesq equation;
  • hillslope discharge;
  • baseflow recession constants;
  • droughts;
  • low streamflows