October 7, 2010

State of Alabama
Press Release: Public Health, Alabama Department of

Alabama Department of Public Health Issues 2010 Fish Consumption Advisories

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:  Charles Woernle, M.D., M.P.H.
1-800-338-8374

Concern about protecting the public from possible health exposure to mercury from eating fish led to the issuance of several new fish consumption advisories for bodies of water in Alabama. The quality of water, based upon the levels of contaminants in fish from the waters in Alabama, generally continues improvements made in recent years. The Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) annually updates fish consumption advisories based on data collected the preceding fall by the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM).

ADEM collected samples of specific fish species for analysis from various waterbodies throughout the state during the fall of 2009. ADPH assessed the analytical results to determine whether any of the tested contaminants in the fish may give rise to potential human health effects.

Fish consumption advisories are issued for specific waterbodies and specific species taken from those areas. In reservoirs, advisories apply to waters as far as a boat can be taken upstream in a tributary, that is, to full pool elevations.

Beginning with the 2007 advisories, ADPH adopted a contaminant level for mercury in fish that would protect those who might consider eating more than one fish meal per week. The new U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards are four times more protective than Food and Drug Administration (FDA) levels previously used. After the lower, more protective limit was adopted in 2007, an increasing number of waterbodies around the state received advisories for mercury in fish as they were tested. Newly issued advisories will be represented as the safe number of meals of that species of fish that can be eaten in a given period of time, such as meals per week, meals per month or no consumption. A meal portion consists of 6 ounces of cooked fish or 8 ounces of raw fish.

All advisories previously issued using FDA guidelines remain in effect for this year (2010) and other advisories have been updated to reflect the EPA consumption levels for mercury contaminated fish.

New consumption advisories were issued for the 17 bodies of water, locations or species described here:

New Advisories for 2010:

WATER BODY / LOCATION / FISH SPECIES / CONTAMINANT / ADVISORY TYPE

Big Nance Creek – Lawrence County
Big Nance Creek at Lawrence County Road 25
Golden redhorse, Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass; Two meals per month golden redhorse
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Big Nance Creek – Lawrence County
Wilson Reservoir, embayment area upstream of AL Highway 101 bridge
Channel catfish, Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Limited consumption** largemouth bass; Two meals per month channel catfish
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Cedar Creek Reservoir – Franklin County
Dam forebay to 1 mile upstream of dam
Channel catfish, Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass; Limited consumption** channel catfish
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Coffeeville Reservoir – Sumter County
Approximately 1.5 miles downstream of US Highway 80/AL Highway 28 bridge, Tombigbee
River mile 202-200.
Largemouth bass, Spotted bass
Contaminant –Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass; Limited consumption** spotted bass
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Flint Creek - Morgan County
Downstream of West Flint Creek confluence, vicinity of US Highway 31
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass
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Limestone Creek – Limestone County
Wheeler Reservoir, embayment beginning approximately 1 mile upstream of confluence with
Tennessee River
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Limited consumption** leargemouth bass
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Little Bear Creek Reservoir - Franklin County
Dam forebay area, Little Bear Creek mile 12.5
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level - Two meals per month largemouth bass
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Tennessee River - Jackson County
Alabama/Tennessee state line upstream of Long Island at Tennessee River mile 417
Spotted bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level - Two meals per month spotted bass
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Upper Bear Creek Reservoir - Marion County
Dam forebay area, Upper Bear Creek Mile 11
Largemouth bass, Channel catfish
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass; Two meals per month channel catfish
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Widows Creek - Jackson County
Vicinity of first bridge crossing of Tennessee River confluence, Million Dollar Bridge
Largemouth bass, Yellow bullhead
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass; Limited consumption** yellow bullhead
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Widows Creek – Jackson County
Upstream of Jackson County Road 96
Freshwater drum, Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass; Limited consumption** freshwater drum

* Everyone should avoid eating the species of fish listed in the defined area.

** 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 6 ounces of cooked fish or 8 ounces of raw fish.

Fish from the following sites were analyzed and found to contain no contaminants at levels that required posting of advisories. Fish from these bodies of water can be consumed with no restrictions: Bakers Creek (Morgan County) Bear, Cane, and Spring Creeks (Colbert County); Elk River, Pickwick Reservoir, and Wilson Reservoir (Lauderdale County); Guntersville Reservoir (Jackson and Marshall Counties); Mobile Bay (Mobile County); Round Island Creek (Limestone County); Short, Spring, and Town Creeks (Marshall County); Spring Creek (Lawrence County); South Sauty and Widows Creeks (Jackson County); Tombigbee River (Washington County); and Wheeler Reservoir (Madison, Marshall, and Limestone Counties). Flint Creek in Morgan County near Wheeler Reservoir and Flint Creek embayment approximately 1 mile downstream of county road 67 bridge contained no contaminants at levels that required posting of advisories. However, a do not consume largemouth bass advisory remains in effect for Flint Creek in Morgan County downstream of the Flint Creek-West Flint Creek confluence in the vicinity of US Highway 31.

Also, a do not consume largemouth bass restriction, as well as a limited consumption of yellow bullhead catfish, was issued for Widows Creek in the vicinity of the first bridge crossing (Million Dollar Bridge) upstream of the Tennessee River/Widows Creek confluence.

A do not consume largemouth bass and limited consumption of freshwater drum restriction was also issued for Widows Creek upstream of Jackson County Road 96. Fish were analyzed for up to 30 different materials or types of materials, including contaminants in the water (PCBs, including dioxins), pesticides (endosulfan, hexachlorobenzene, chlordane, lindane, dieldrin, endrin, DDT and its breakdown products and congeners, heptachlors, Mirex, chlorpyriphos and toxaphene), and heavy metals (arsenic, cadmium, mercury and selenium) to which the fish may have been exposed. In addition, fish were examined for body appearance, lipid content, age and weight.

Fish are good indicators of the health of a waterbody. Some contaminants could bioaccumulate in fish. The contaminant could enter the food supply through either crustaceans or bottom feeding fish in a given area. These species would be eaten by larger or more aggressive species, thereby transferring the contaminant from the species consumed to the larger species.

The advice contained in this release and complete listings of the posted fish consumption advisories (http://www.adph.org) are offered as guidance to individuals who wish to eat fish they catch from various waterbodies throughout the state. No regulations ban the consumption of any of the fish caught within the state, nor is there a risk of an acute toxic episode that could result from consuming any of the fish containing the contaminants for which the state has conducted analyses.

A fish consumption advisory can be issued for one or more specific species of fish within a waterbody or an advisory can be extended to include all fish species within that waterbody.

When excess levels of a contaminant are found in a specific species of fish, an advisory is issued for that specific species. For example, if an advisory had been issued for largemouth bass and not for channel catfish, it would be advised that individuals should not eat largemouth bass, but consumption of channel catfish is permissible without endangering health. When excess levels of a contaminant are found in multiple fish species sampled from a specific waterbody, a No Consumption Advisory is issued. Consumption of any fish from a specific waterbody under a No Consumption Advisory may place the consumer at risk for harm from the contaminant.

The intent of a Limited Consumption Advisory is for women of childbearing age, pregnant women and children (less than 15 years of age) to refrain from consumption of any fish indicated under this advisory. All other individuals should limit their consumption of the particular species to one meal per month.

For example, the FDA tolerance level for PCBs is calculated to protect people who consume one meal of fish a month throughout their lifetime. Individuals who eat these fish more frequently or for many years place themselves at greater risk. Individuals who eat these fish only once each month or less frequently are at less risk.

PCBs are listed by EPA as "probable human carcinogens." This listing is used for chemicals that have been found to cause cancer in laboratory animals but have not been shown to cause cancer in humans. PCBs have also been associated with a skin disorder known as chloracne as well as changes in cholesterol and triglyceride levels in human blood.

Women of childbearing age and children should not consume any of these fish on which a Limited or No Consumption Advisory exists.

The following advisories, issued in previous years, remain in effect:

Subsequent sampling and analysis render the advisories in the meal per month format.

WATER BODY / LOCATION / FISH SPECIES / CONTAMINANT / ADVISORY TYPE

Bear Creek Reservoir – Franklin County
Dam forebay area, Bear Creek mile 75
Largemouth bass
Contaminant –Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Big Creek Reservoir – Mobile County
Lakewide
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month largemouth bass
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Big Escambia Creek – Escambia County
At the Louisville and Nashville Railroad Bridge Crossing
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bilbo Creek – Washington County
Upstream of the confluence with the Tombigbee River
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level - One meal per month
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Blackwater Creek – Baldwin County
In the area between the mouth of the river and the pipeline crossing southeast of
Robertsdale
Blacktail redhorse, Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass; Two meals per month blacktail redhorse
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Blackwater River – Escambia County
Between the County Road 4 bridge and the Alabama/Florida state line
Largemouth bass, Spotted bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass, One meal per month spotted bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bon Secour River – Baldwin County
Vicinity of County Road 10 Bridge
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level—Do not consume* largemouth bass
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Burnt Corn Creek – Escambia County
Burnt Corn Creek upstream from confluence with Murder Creek
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meals per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cedar Creek – Houston County
Cedar Creek drainage from American Brass site near Headland tributary to Omusee Creek
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Chickasaw Creek – Mobile County
Entire creek
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass
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Choccolocco Creek
In the vicinity of Boiling Springs Road bridge crossing
Spotted bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month spotted bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Choccolocco Creek – Calhoun, Talladega Counties
Entire length of creek from south of Oxford to Logan Martin Lake
All species
Contaminant – PCBs
Consumption level – No Consumption Advisory; Do not consume* any fish
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Choccolocco Creek – Talladega County
In the vicinity of County Road 399 bridge
Spotted bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month spotted bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Choctawhatchee River – Geneva
Entire river
Redear sunfish, Spotted bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month redear sunfish; Two meal per month spotted bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Claiborne Reservoir – Clarke, Monroe Counties
Dam forebay area and in vicinity of Lower Peachtree access area approx, River mile 96 close to the intersection of Clarke, Monroe and Wilcox Counties
Largemouth bass
Contaminant - Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Claiborne Reservoir –Monroe County
Dam forebay area, river mile 73
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cold Creek Swamp – Mobile County
From confluence of Cold Creek with the Mobile River west through the swamp
All species
Contaminant - Mercury
Consumption level – No Consumption Advisory; Do not consume* any fish
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Conecuh River – Escambia County
Vicinity of Pollard Landing to Alabama Florida state line
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Coosa River – Calhoun, St. Clair, Talladega Counties
Between Neely Henry Dam and Riverside
Catfish
Contaminant – PCBs
Consumption level – Limited consumption** of catfish over 1 pound
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Coosa River – St. Clair, Talladega Counties
Between Riverside and Logan Martin Dam
Striped bass
Contaminant – PCBs
Consumption level – Do not consume* striped bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Coosa River – Shelby, St. Clair, Talladega Counties
Between Logan Martin Dam and the railroad tracks crossing the Coosa near Vincent
Striped bass
Contaminant – PCBs
Consumption level – Do not consume* striped bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Coosa River – Chilton, Coosa, Shelby, St. Clair, Talladega Counties
Lay Lake between Logan Martin Dam and Lay Dam
Striped bass
Contaminant – PCBs
Consumption level – Do not consume* striped bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Coosa River – St. Clair County
Upper Lay Reservoir approximately 2 miles downstream of Logan Martin Dam and 0.5
miles downstream of Kelly Creek-Coosa River confluence in the vicinity of Ratcliff/Elliott Island
Spotted bass
Contaminant – PCBs, Mercury
Consumption level – Limited consumption** spotted bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cowikee Creek – Barbour County
Cowikee Creek embayment of WF George Reservoir, approximate area from US 431 bridge to Chattahoochee River main channel. In vicinity of Lake Point Resort and State Park
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cowpen Creek – Baldwin County
Upstream of confluence with Fish River
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Escatawpa River – Mobile County
US Highway 98 bridge approximately 1/10 mile upstream of Alabama/Mississippi state line
Largemouth bass, spotted bass, Blacktail redhorse, Channel catfish
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal every 2 months (or one-half meal per month) for largemouth bass and spotted bass; One meal per month for blacktail redhorse and channel catfish
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fish River – Baldwin County
Polecat Creek confluence vicinity approximately 1 mile upstream of County Road 32 bridge
Largemouth bass, Black crappie
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal every 2 months (or one-half meal per month) largemouth bass; One meal per month black crappie
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fish River – Baldwin County
Approximately 2 miles upstream of U.S. 98 Bridge in the vicinity of Waterhole Branch/Fish
River confluence just above the two islands
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fowl River – Mobile County
Entire river
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Frank Jackson Lake – Covington County
Lightwood Knot Creek, Frank Jackson Lake lake wide, Opp
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month for largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gantt Reservoir – Covington County
Conecuh River, Gantt reservoir, lake wide
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gulf Coast – Baldwin, Mobile Counties
Entire coast
King mackerel
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* king mackerel over 39 inches; Limited consumption** king mackerel under 39 inches
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Huntsville Spring Branch & Indian Creek – Madison County
From Redstone Arsenal to the Tennessee River
Smallmouth buffalofish, Bigmouth buffalofish
Contaminant – DDT
Consumption level – Do not consume* smallmouth or bigmouth buffalofish
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lake Jackson – Covington County
Lake Jackson located on the Alabama/Florida state line at Florala
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lake Tuscaloosa – Tuscaloosa County
Entire lake
All species
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month any fish
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Lewis Smith Reservoir – Cullman County
Ryan Creek, Lewis Smith reservoir in the vicinity of Cullman County Road 222 bridge
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lewis Smith Reservoir – Winston County
Rock Creek, Lewis Smith reservoir in vicinity of Little Crooked Creek and Rock Creek
Marina, approximately 5 miles upstream of Sipsey Fork
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month largemouth bass
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Lewis Smith Reservoir – Winston County
Lewis Smith reservoir mouth of Clear Creek, mouth of Butler Creek
Largemouth bass, Spotted bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month largemouth bass; One meal per month spotted bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Little Escambia Creek – Escambia County
In Escambia County at U.S. Highway 31/29 Bridge
Spotted bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* spotted bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Mobile River – Mobile County
At and south of the confluence with Cold Creek
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
North River – Tuscaloosa County
Upstream of Lake Tuscaloosa, immediately upstream of Bull Slough Road
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Opossum Creek – Jefferson County
From the Pumping Station to the confluence with Valley Creek
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Patsaliga Creek – Covington County
Patsaliga Creek embayment of Point A Reservoir
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pea River – Geneva County
Entire river
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Perdido River – Baldwin County
Near confluence with Styx River in vicinity of U.S. Highway 90 Bridge crossing
Largemouth bass, River redhorse
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month largemouth bass; Two meals per month river redhorse
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Point A Reservoir – Covington County
Conecuh river, Point A Reservoir, lake wide
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Polecat Creek – Baldwin County
Upstream of confluence with Fish River
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sepulga River – Escambia County
Sepulga River Upstream of Conecuh River confluence
Spotted bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month spotted bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sipsey River – Tuscaloosa County
Sipsey River embayment, approximately ½ mile upstream of confluence with Tombigbee River
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Styx River – Baldwin County
Entire river
Channel catfish, Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Limited consumption** of channel catfish; One meal per month for largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tensaw River – Baldwin County
Entire river
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Limited consumption** of largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tombigbee River – Clarke County
Vicinity of Tombigbee River mile 83.6
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – One meal per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Uchee Creek – Russell County
Uchee Creek in vicinity of Uchee Recreational Park
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Two meals per month largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Valley Creek – Jefferson County
Around the confluence with Opossum Creek
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Yellow River – Covington County
At County Road 4 bridge crossing approximately 1.5 miles upstream of Alabama/Florida line
Largemouth bass
Contaminant – Mercury
Consumption level – Do not consume* largemouth bass
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

* Everyone should avoid eating the species of fish listed in the defined area.

** 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 6 ounces of cooked fish or 8 ounces of raw fish.

-30-

10/06/10



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