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Health and Family Services Cabinet
Advisory for Kentucky Fish Consumption Unchanged

Press Release Date:  Friday, August 20, 2010  
Contact Information:  Gwenda Bond or Beth Fisher, (502) 564-6786, ext. 3325 and 4012  


Pregnant Women, Children Should Follow Guidelines for Special Populations

The Kentucky Department for Public Health (DPH), the Department for Environmental Protection and the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources today issued fish consumption advisories for bodies of water in Kentucky. The 2010 advisories remain unchanged from those issued last year. 


These advisories inform the public of possible risks of eating unrestricted amounts of some fish retrieved from Kentucky’s waterways. The advisories were issued due to elevated levels of PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) and mercury levels found in some species of fish sampled for these substances. 


“Children, pregnant women and women who are planning to become pregnant are more sensitive to contaminants sometimes found in fish,” said William Hacker, M.D., DPH commissioner. “Breastfeeding mothers should also be careful about the kinds of fish eaten and the frequency of consumption. By following the guidelines in this advisory, individuals can reduce their exposure to contaminants in fish, help reduce their health risks, and still get the benefits of eating fish.” 


“Fish are a nutritious, low-fat food and good for you when eaten in moderation,” said Ron Brooks, director of fisheries with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife. “Cooking may reduce some contaminants in fish, but will not reduce mercury levels.”


The following are consumption precautions for various tested species in these bodies of water. Typically, if a species is not listed, this does not necessarily mean these other fish species are risk-free to consumers. Rather, it means there may not be data available for that particular species.

Lake Cumberland


Lake Cumberland is approximately 47,680 acres and impounds the Cumberland River in south central Kentucky. This advisory is considered to be a lake-wide advisory and will include the waters from the confluence of Laurel River and Cumberland River to the Wolf Creek Dam on Lake Cumberland.


Fish Groups             Contaminant       General Population     Sensitive Population
Black Bass                     Mercury                      1 meal/month                6 meals/year
Crappie/Rock Bass  Mercury                       1 meal/week                  1 meal/month


Guist Creek Lake
Guist Creek Lake is approximately 321 acres and impounds Guist Creek and Tick Creek in Shelby County. This advisory is considered to be lake-wide from the headwaters of the lake to the dam.

Fish Groups        Contaminant                  General Population    Sensitive Population
Black Bass            Mercury                               1 meal per month            6 meals per year

Fish Lake
Ballard Wildlife Management Areas, Fish Lake, is an approximately 30-acre natural lake in Ballard County. This advisory is considered to be lake-wide from the headwaters of the lake to the outflow of Shawnee Creek.

Fish Group          Contaminant      General Population         Sensitive Population
Black Bass            Mercury               1 meal per month            6 meals per year
Suckers/Carp     Mercury               1 meal per month            6 meals per year

Green River Lake
Green River Lake is approximately 8,210 acres and impounds Robinson Creek and the Green River in Taylor and Adair counties. The advisory for PCBs and mercury is considered lake-wide from the headwaters of the lake to the dam. Due to decreasing levels of PCBs in the Green River Lake, the advisory is modified from “do not eat” to one meal per month for the general population and six meals per year for the sensitive population. Channel Catfish are being removed from the PCB advisory.

Fish Group             Contaminant              General Population     Sensitive Population
Suckers/Carp        PCB                                     1 meal per month            6 meals per year
Black Bass               Mercury                            1 meal per month            6 meals per year
Catfish/Drum        Mercury                            1 meal per month            6 meals per year

Knox Creek
There are approximately 7.8 miles of Knox Creek in Pike County. The headwaters of Knox Creek are located predominantly in Buchanan County, Va. Virginia issued a similar fish consumption advisory for its section of this creek. This fish consumption advisory will include all of Knox Creek from the Virginia-Kentucky state line to the Tug Fork River.

Fish Group          Contaminant           General Population   Special Population
Black Bass                           PCB, Mercury            1 meal per month      6 meals per year
Crappie/Rock Bass           PCB, Mercury            1 meal per month      6 meals per year
Catfish/Drum                     PCB                                6 meals per year                     No Consumption
Flathead Catfish               PCB, Mercury            No Consumption                    No Consumption

Fishtrap Lake
Fishtrap Lake is approximately 1,100 acres and impounds the Levisa Fork River in Pike County. This advisory will include the Levisa Fork River from the Kentucky-Virginia state line to the dam on Fishtrap Lake. Virginia issued a similar fish consumption advisory for a portion of the Levisa Fork River in its state.

Fish Groups             Contaminant General Population         Special Population
Black Bass                 PCB, Mercury               1 meal per week              1 meal per month
White Bass               PCB, Mercury               1 meal per month            6 meals per year
Catfish/Drum          PCB, Mercury               1 meal per month            6 meals per year
Suckers/Carp       PCB, Mercury  1 meal per month            6 meals per year
Flathead Catfish   PCB, Mercury 1 meal per week              1 meal per month


These are the most recent advisories listed for Kentucky waterways. Other, longstanding advisories remain in effect for parts of Drakes Creek in Franklin; Little Bayou Creek and Metropolis Lake, both in McCracken County; Mud River (from Hancock Lake Dam to Wolf Lick Creek and from Wolf Lick Creek to the Green River); and Town Branch in Logan County. Additional information regarding Kentucky’s fish consumption advisories can be found on the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife website, at http://fw.ky.gov/fishadvisory.asp?lid=900&NavPath=C101 .

 



 

Last Updated 8/20/2010