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Comparative Analysis of Modeling Techniques for Coliform Organisms in Streams

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The use of models for predicting changes in water quality parameters is currently considered an integral part of river basin management. The application of modeling techniques to coliform organisms is in its infancy due to the complexities involved and the lack of definitive information on coliform populations in natural environments. The purpose of this study was to make a comparative analysis of the available models for coliform organisms in order to improve on the state of the art of this subject. The available coliform models may be classified into deterministic or statistical types. In this study, six different models, three of each type, were selected for analysis and were applied to coliform data available on the Leaf River. Results of comparing the models indicated that a deterministic model was best suited for total coliform and a statistical model was best suited for fecal coliform. Ultimate selection of a model for coliform organisms is dependent not only on the accuracy of the model but on ease of implementation. Current technology would probably dictate the use of a deterministic model because of the lack of a complete data base on which to base statistical models.


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