MISSISSIPPI DELTA — The Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) and the Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) are removing several waters from the 2001 Delta Regional Fish Advisory.
The agencies, in conjunction with the Mississippi Fish Advisory Task Force, have determined through fish tissue data analysis that people can now consume all species of fish caught from Steele Bayou, Black Bayou, Bee Lake, Recon Lake (Rainey’s Lake) and Charlie Capps Lake.
The Delta Regional Fish Advisory, which remains in effect for the rest of the Delta, was issued in 2001 because of elevated levels of the pesticides DDT and toxaphene in certain types of fish. This advisory recommends that people limit their consumption of carp, gar, buffalo and large catfish (larger than 22″) to no more than two meals per month, and for people to not eat buffalo from Roebuck Lake.
This advisory modification also removes this “No Consumption” restriction for buffalo from Roebuck Lake, but the lake remains under the general Delta Regional Fish Advisory.
“The decline in pesticide levels in fish from these waters is good news for Delta residents and fishermen and for our environment. This good news is partially due to the natural breakdown of these chemicals, but also to the diligent work by multiple natural resource agencies, farmers in the Delta, and other partners, who have implemented plans and practices to reduce soil loss and keep soil and chemicals out of Delta streams,” said Trudy Fisher, MDEQ executive director.
Except for the waters listed above, the Delta Regional Fish Advisory now applies to the entire Delta, from the bluff hills to the Mississippi River Levee. This advisory does not apply to the Mississippi River and waters located west of the main Mississippi River levee, and it does not apply to farm raised catfish.