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Streamflow gains and losses and selected water-quality observations in five subreaches of the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo del Norte from near Presidio to Langtry, Texas, Big Bend area, United States and Mexico, 2006

Scientific Investigations Report 2012-5125

Prepared in cooperation with the National Park Service and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
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Abstract

Few historical streamflow and water-quality data are available to characterize the segment of the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo del Norte (hereinafter Rio Grande) extending from near Presidio to near Langtry, Texas. The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the National Park Service and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, collected water-quality and streamflow data from the Rio Grande from near Presidio to near Langtry, Texas, to characterize the streamflow gain and loss and selected constituent concentrations in a 336.3-mile reach of the Rio Grande from near Presidio to near Langtry, Texas. Streamflow was measured at 38 sites and water-quality samples were collected at 20 sites along the Rio Grande in February, March, and June 2006. Streamflow gains and losses over the course of the stream were measured indirectly by computing the differences in measured streamflow between sites along the stream. Water-quality data were collected and analyzed for salinity, dissolved solids, major ions, nutrients, trace elements, and stable isotopes. Selected properties and constituents were compared to available Texas Commission on Environmental Quality general use protection criteria or screening levels. Summary statistics of selected water-quality data were computed for each of the five designated subreaches. Streamflow gain and loss and water-quality constituent concentration were compared for each subreach, rather than the entire segment because of the temporal variation in sample collection caused by controlled releases upstream. Subreach A was determined to be a losing reach, and subreaches B, C, D, and E were determined to be gaining reaches. Compared to concentrations measured in upstream subreaches, downstream subreaches exhibited evidence of dilution of selected constituent concentrations. Subreaches A and B had measured total dissolved solids, chloride, and sulfate exceeding the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality general use protection criteria. Subreaches C, D, and E did not exceed the general use protection criteria for any constituent concentration criteria, but dissolved oxygen concentrations did not meet the general use criteria in these subreaches.

Geospatial Extents

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Streamflow gains and losses and selected water-quality observations in five subreaches of the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo del Norte from near Presidio to Langtry, Texas, Big Bend area, United States and Mexico, 2006
Series title:
Scientific Investigations Report
Series number:
2012-5125
Year Published:
2012
Language:
English
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location:
Reston, VA
Contributing office(s):
Texas Water Science Center
Description:
vi, 30 p.
Time Range Start:
2006-02-01
Time Range End:
2006-06-30
Country:
Mexico;United States
State:
Chihuahua;Coahuila;Texas
County:
Brewster;Presido;Terrell;Val Verde
City:
Langtry;Presidio
Other Geospatial:
Area Of Protection Maderas Del Carmen;Area Of Protection Ocampo;Rio Grande River;Black Gap State Wildlife Mangement Area;Big Bend National Park;Big Bend Ranch State Park;Santa Elena Canyon
Datum:
North American Datum of 1983
Projection:
Universal Transverse Mercator Projection Zone 13
Scale:
100000