Safety concerns about eating fish in Shasta Lake

Safety concerns about eating fish in...

SHASTA LAKE, Calif. - The California Environmental Protection Agency published guidelines for acceptable chemicals in fish caught in Shasta Lake.

Fisherman Chestopulus Anthony said most local fishermen do not eat the fish they catch at Shasta Lake because of PCBs and mercury.

The advisory recommends limits on the amount of different fish species caught in the lake.

Officials said women ages 18-to-45 and children one-to-17 should not eat any Channel Catfish from Shasta Lake.

For other species like Rainbow Trout, those same age groups can safely eat three servings per week.

Director of the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) Doctor Lauren Zeise said eating fish with low chemical contaminants can reduce risk of heart disease.

Anthony said he is aware of the chemicals in the lake due to the history of mining in the area.

"People don't really talk too much about the mercury, but I know. It's kind of like the river, you don't eat too much fish out of it, if you're going to catch it, catch and release. A lot of trophy fishes taken out, what have you. But as far as mercury goes, know one sees it," Anthony said.

OEHHA also said to avoid contaminant build up in skin, only eat skinless fish. High levels of mercury in fish can damage the brain and nervous systems, especially in children.


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