Semestral Journal of Centro Argentino de Meteorólogos, which is published  since 1970 and serves on the Core of Argentine Scientific Journals since 2005. Meteorologica publishes original papers in the field of atmospheric sciences and oceanography.

Registration number of intellectual property: 2023-95212445-APN-DNDA#MJ

ISSN 1850-468X



Natalia Pessacg, Silvia Flaherty, Laura Brandizi, Magalí Rechencq, Martín García Asorey, Leandro Castiñeira, Silvina Solman y Miguel Pascual

Instituto Patagónico para el Estudio de los Ecosistemas Continentales, CCT CENPAT-CONICET,
Puerto Madryn, Argentina
Universidad Tecnológica Nacional, Puerto Madryn, Argentina
Universidad de la Patagonia San Juan Bosco, Trelew, Argentina
Instituto de Investigaciones en Biodiversidad y Medioambiente, CONICET-Universidad Nacional del
Comahue, CCT Patagonia Norte, Bariloche, Argentina
Centro de Ecología Aplicada de Neuquén, CEAN, Junín de los Andes, Argentina
Centro de Investigaciones del Mar y la Atmósfera CONICET-UBA, DCAO/FCEN, UMI
IFAECI/CNRS, Ciudad de Buenos Aires, Argentina

Manuscript received on 20th March 2017, in final form on 28th June 2017


In this study, we carried out a sensitivity analysis and calibration of the InVEST model and we tested its performance to simulate annual water yield for the Limay River Basin. Water yield is an important hydrological ecosystem service which results from the evaporation-precipitation budget, and also depends on land cover and soil characteristics. We evaluated the sensitivity of water yield to different precipitation and land use/ land cover databases. These simulations allowed us to rank the Limay River sub-basins according to their annual water yield. This ranking, showed that Aluminé is the subbasin with the largest water yield, followed by Nahuel Huapi subbasin. The sensitivity analysis to the precipitation databases demonstrates the need for using precipitation databases with high spatial resolution and high density of meteorological stations when modelling studies at the basin scale are performed. The NPCG precipitation database, generated for North Patagonia with high meteorological station density, produced the best results and allowed for a good model calibration. The simulations performed using different global or quasi-global precipitation databases showed an important dispersion in the results. Results also suggest that water yield sensitivity to land use/land cover is lower than to precipitation. However, when relevant mismatches among land use/land cover databases were located in the headwater subbasins, simulated water yield showed important differences. The best model performance (error less than 10 % in annual water yield) was obtained using the SERENA land use/land cover database together with the NPCG precipitation database and a value of 15 for the eco-hydrological parameter Z.