Health dept. issues fish consumption advisories

Published 12:00 am Friday, July 13, 2007

DEMOPOLIS &8212; Those who regularly consume fish caught from area rivers should take caution in the amount of fish consumed, following the results of a recent report.

According to findings from a 2006 survey done by the Alabama Department of Environmental Management the Tombigbee River system, which connects to the Mobile River and runs into the Black Warrior River north of Demopolis, was found to have high levels of the contaminant mercury.

Due to the findings, this system and many others in the state have been issued limited consumption notices by the Alabama Department of Health.

Email newsletter signup

ADEM collected more than 500 fish samples for analysis from various waterway systems throughout the state. According to Sass, these surveys are done every year on a rotating basis of each of the five major waterways.

According to the ADEM website, a limited consumption advisory states that women of reproductive age and children less than 15-years-old should avoid eating certain fish from these areas. Other people should limit their consumption of the particular species to one meal per month. A meal is considered to be six ounces of cooked fish or eight ounces of raw fish.

The limited consumption advisory for the Tombigbee water system is for largemouth bass, which Sass said is best to restrict consumption on at this time.

Sass also said there is not need to cut any kind of fish out of one&8217;s diet because of these advisories, because the &8220;benefits far outweigh the risks.&8221;