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Health Advisory: Fish Smart, Eat Smart


Eating Fish And Crabs Caught In New Jersey Waters

Fishing provides enjoyable and relaxing recreation. Fish are an excellent source of protein and other nutrients and play a role in maintaining a healthy, well-balanced diet. Many anglers enjoy cooking and eating their own catch. However, elevated levels of potentially harmful chemical contaminants such as dioxin, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), pesticides and mercury have been found in certain fish and crabs in some New Jersey waters. Fish consumption advisories have been adopted to guide citizens on safe consumption practices.

The current list of fish consumption advisories consists of statewide, regional and water body-specific warnings for a variety of fish species and fish consumers. The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the Department of Health and Senior Services have prepared literature and a new Web site to help you make informed choices about which fish to eat and how to reduce your exposure to these harmful chemicals.

Check online for fish consumption advisories on the local water body in which you fish! Go to

To reduce exposure to harmful chemical contaminants when preparing and eating the fish species taken from the identified waters, it is essential to follow the guidelines provided. The DEP encourages you to consult the Fish Smart-Eat Smart Fish Advisory Guide or when making decisions about eating recreationally caught fish and crabs.

The Fish Smart-Eat Smart Advisory Guide includes contaminant information, advisory charts, plus preparation and cooking methods to reduce contaminant levels, as well as specific guidelines, advice and prohibitions for people at high risk, such as children, pregnant women and women of child-bearing age.
The Guide also includes Web site links to Pennsylvania, Delaware and New York for information about fish consumption advisories for shared waters.

For a complete list of state and federal marine fish consumption advisories visit:

The fish consumption advisories and Fish Smart-Eat Smart Web site are updated periodically and are available online or from the Office of Science at (609) 984-6070 and through the Department of Health and Senior Services at (609) 826-4935.


Photo Above: Cody Griglak and his first bluefish held by his father Keith.

News Bulletin Fish & Wildlife Info

Take A Friend Fishing!

The memories will last a lifetime.

FREE Freshwater Fishing Days

—June 15 and 16, 2013—

On these two days, residents and non-residents may fish New Jersey’s public fresh waters without a license or trout stamp. All other
regulations, including size and daily catch limits, remain in effect.


Accessible Fishing Sites

For people with disabilities, visit:

An Accessible Fishing Sites list is available to assist anglers whose mobility is impaired. All sites are wheelchair-accessible except for the Musconetcong River in Morris County, where vehicle access is to the shoreline.

Publications Available

The following publications
are available by writing:

Nacote Creek Research Station Publications
P.O. Box 418
Port Republic, NJ 08241

Shellfish Growing Waters Classification Charts

This publication is available free at any shellfish license agent and online at

New Jersey Boaters Guide

Send a self-addressed stamped, #10 envelope
(2 oz. postage).

New Jersey Pumpout Directory
(free waterproof map)

Write to the Nacote Creek address above.

The following publications are also available online at


  • Guide to New Jersey Saltwater Fishing (available online only)
  • NJ Reef News
  • Party and Charter Boat Directory
    (available online only)


Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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Conservation Partner Advertisements: The New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife allows appropriate advertising in its annual regulation guides in print and online, in order to defray or eliminate expenses to the state, and support enhanced communications with New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife Constituents. Through a unique partnership with J.F.Griffin Publishing, LLC &, ‘Conservation Partners’ have been established that pay for advertising in support of the regulations both in print and online. The New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife neither endorses products or services listed or claims made; nor accepts any liability arising from the use of products or services listed. Advertisers interested in the Conservation Partners program should contact J.F.Griffin/ directly at 413-884-1001,
J.F. Griffin reaches 20 million sportsmen every year through our print and digital publications. We produce 47 hunting and fishing regulation guides for 22 state agencies.
For advertising information, please visit: