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Energy and Environment Cabinet

Division of Water
Fish Consumption

Locations and reasons for fish consumption advisories in Kentucky.
  • The 2009 fish consumption advisory for Kentucky waterways was issued July 17, 2009. Many states are discovering elevated mercury levels in fish tissue and are issuing advisories to better inform the public of the potential risks of frequently eating fish associated with an advisory. The 2009 advisories for Kentucky remain unchanged from last year. 
  • A fish consumption advisory was issued July 29, 2008, for the Ohio River due to elevated levels of PCBs and mercury found in some species of fish sampled for these substances. Most of the 2008 advisories either continue or modify existing fish consumption advisories issued from previous years. This year, three bodies of water are being added to the advisory list because of elevated mercury levels. They include lake Cumberland in Pulaski, Wayne, Russell and Clinton counties; Guist Creek Lake in Shelby County; and Fish Lake in Ballard County.
  • A fish consumption advisory was issued July 5, 2007, for Knox Creek and Fishtrap Lake in Pike County due to elevated polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) and mercury levels.
  • A fish consumption advisory for the Mud River and Town Branch in Logan, Butler and Muhlenberg counties because of PCB contamination was amended on May 26, 2004.  This modifies the advisory that has been in place since 1999 for species caught in those streams. 
  • Five ponds on the West Kentucky Wildlife Management Area (McCracken County) are also under a fish consumption advisory because of mercury from unknown sources.
  • Click on the year for the following Ohio River fish consumption advisories: 2005, 2002, 2001.
  • A statewide fish consumption advisory was issued on April 11, 2000, because of low levels of organic mercury found in samples of fish from Kentucky waters. Women of childbearing age and children 6 years and younger are advised to eat no more than one meal per week of freshwater fish from Kentucky rivers, streams and lakes because of the presence of mercury.
  • A fish consumption advisory was issued on July 7, 2000, for Metropolis Lake in McCracken County because of elevated PCB and mercury levels in fish. The advisory recommends that no more than one meal (one-half pound) per month of most fish, including largemouth bass and channel catfish, from Metropolis Lake should be eaten.
  • In 1994, an advisory noted that certain species of fish caught in Green River Lake contain PCBs at elevated levels. These include carp and channel catfish.
  • An advisory was issued in 1989 for fish from the Little Bayou Creek west of Paducah near Heath in McCracken County because of elevated levels of PCBs.

See the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources Web site for additional information about fish consumption advisories.

For additional information about fish tissue and fish consumption advisories, contact Garrett Stillings at