San Gabriel River Regional Monitoring Program

Fish Consumption

Is it safe to eat fish?
This question addresses the human health risk of consuming fish caught by recreational anglers at popular fishing locations in the watershed. Hundreds of fish have been collected from eight waterbodies since 2006. The goal of the fish consumption program is to evaluate fish species that are of greatest concern for human consumption in the San Gabriel River Watershed. The data generated from this monitoring effort will be used to further refine the program to focus on fish species and water bodies of greatest concern and to provide watershed managers with the information necessary to educate the public regarding the safety of consuming the fish they catch. Fish tissues were collected following guidelines established by OEHHA (2005) using a combination of techniques depending on the water body and included boat drawn seines, hand seines, hook and line, and electro shocking.

You can learn more about fish sampling methods here.

State of California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment

Fish Consumption Guidelines
The OEHHA Advisory Tissue Levels (ATLs) were developed with the recognition that there are unique health benefits associated with fish consumption and that the advisory process should be expanded beyond a simple risk paradigm in order to best promote the overall health of the fish consumer. ATLs protect consumers from being exposed to more than the average daily reference dose for non-carcinogensor to a lifetime cancer risk level of 1 in 10,000 for fishermen who consume an 8ounce fish fillet containing a given amount of a specific contaminant.
On the map to the left, click on a fishing site to see which fish were collected and if the concentration of either mercury, DDT, PCB or selenium exceeded an OEHHA consumption restriction guideline. For much more information on these guidelines we suggest you review the fish advisory information published by the State of California.