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New York

Fishing

Health Advice for Eating Sportfish

NYS Department of Health’s advice about eating sportfish (fish you catch) helps people reduce their exposures to chemicals and get the health benefits from eating fish.

Advice That Applies to All NYS Freshwaters (General Advice)

Everyone can eat up to four, half-pound meals of fish from waters without specific advice.

Waters with specific advice are listed alphabetically below and by region at

www.health.ny.gov/fish.

Adirondack and Catskill Waters

There is also specific advice for Adirondack and Catskill Region waters including popular fishing spots like Great Sacandaga Lake and the Ashokan Reservoir. View Adirondack and Catskill waters advice at www.health.ny.gov/fish.

Adirondack and Catskill Regional Advice

When there is no specific advice for waters:

  • Women under 50 and children under 15 do not eat: yellow perch greater than 10”, northern pike, pickerel, walleye, large and smallmouth bass.
  • Everyone in the family can eat up to 4 meals/month of: yellow perch less than 10”, bluegill sunfish, brook trout, bullhead, brown trout, pumpkinseed sunfish, rainbow trout, rock bass.

    Waters with Specific Advice

For Adirondack and Catskill waters, visit www.health.ny.gov/fish.

Specific advice also apply to connected waters if there are no barriers to stop fish from moving upstream or downstream. This is because chemicals remain in fish when they move from one waterbody to another.

Women under 50 years of age and children under 15 years of age should not eat any fish from the waters listed below. All others should follow this advice: New advice listed in blue.

(Note: harvest/possession of Hudson River American Eel for food and American Shad is prohibited per DEC regulations).

Amawalk Reservoir (Westchester), Largemouth & Smallmouth Bass over 16” 1 meal/month

Black River, from Carthage State Dam to Herrings Dam (Jefferson), Carp 1 meal/ month

Bog Brook Reservoir (Putnam), Walleye over 21” 1 meal/month

Boyd Corners Reservoir (Putnam), Largemouth Bass over 16” & Walleye 1 meal/month

Breakneck Pond (Rockland), Largemouth Bass over 15” 1 meal/month

Bufalo River/Harbor (Erie), Carp DON’T EAT; Channel Catfish 1 meal/month

Canadice Lake (Ontario), Lake Trout over 23” DON’T EAT; Brown Trout & smaller Lake Trout 1 meal/month

Carmans River, above Southaven Dam

(Suffolk) See Waters with Family Advice

Cayuga Creek (Niagara), All species DON’T EAT

Chenango River (Multiple), Walleye over

22” 1 meal/month

Chodikee Lake (Ulster),

Largemouth Bass over 15” 1 meal/month

Cross River Reservoir (Westchester), Largemouth & Smallmouth Bass over 16” 1 meal/month

Delaware Park/Hoyt Lake (Erie), Carp 1 meal/month Delta Lake (Oneida), Walleye over 23” 1 meal/month

Diverting Reservoir (Putnam), Walleye 1 meal/month

Dunham Reservoir (Rensselaer), Walleye DON’T EAT; Smallmouth Bass 1 meal/month

Dyken Pond (Rensselaer), Largemouth Bass 1 meal/month

East Branch Reservoir (Putnam), Walleye 1 meal/month

Eighteenmile Creek, above/below Burt Dam (Niagara), All species DON’T EAT

Erie Canal, between Lockport and Niagara River (Erie/Niagara), Carp 1 meal/month

Freeport Reservoir (Nassau), Carp 1 meal/month

Fresh Pond, Hither Hills State Park

(Suffolk), Largemouth Bass over 15” 1 meal/ month

Goodyear Lake (Otsego), Walleye over 22” 1 meal/month

Grant Park Pond (Nassau), Carp 1 meal/month

Grasse River to Massena Power Canal (St. Lawrence), All species DON’T EAT

Hall’s Pond (Nassau), Carp & Goldfish DON’T EAT

Hoosic River (Rensselaer), Brown Trout over 14” & Carp 1 meal/month

Hudson River, Upstream from Corinth Dam (Palmer Falls Dam) (Warren, Essex, Saratoga, Hamilton), follow Adirondack Regional Advice

  • Corinth Dam (Palmer Falls Dam) to South Glens Falls Dam at Rte. 9 Bridge (Warren, Saratoga), Smallmouth Bass over 14”, up to 1 meal/month; Carp 1 meal/ month
  • South Glens Falls Dam at Rte. 9 Bridge to Hudson Falls Dam at Bakers Falls (Warren, Washington, Saratoga), All fish DON’T EAT
  • Hudson Falls Dam at Bakers Falls to Federal Dam at Troy (Rensselaer, Albany, Washington, Saratoga), All fish, Catch and Release fishing ONLY per DEC regulations. Take No Fish. Eat No Fish.
  • Federal Dam at Troy to Rip Van Winkle Bridge at Catskill (Rensselaer, Albany, Columbia, Greene), Alewife, Blueback Herring, Rock Bass, Yellow Perch 1 meal/ month; All other fish (including Striped Bass and Walleye) DON’T EAT
  • Hudson River, Rip Van Winkle Bridge

    at Catskill to NYC Battery (Bronx, Columbia, Dutchess, Greene, New York, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Ulster, Westchester), Channel Catfish, Gizzard Shad, Walleye, White Catfish, DON’T EAT; Blue Crab meat 1 meal/week (~6 crabs), DON’T EAT tomalley; Striped Bass, Bluefish, Brown Bullhead, Carp, Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, White Perch, Rainbow Smelt, Atlantic Needlefish, Goldfish 1 meal/month

    Kinderhook Lake (Columbia), American Eel 1 meal/month

    Koppers Pond (Chemung), Carp 1 meal/ month

    Lake Capri (Suffolk), American Eel & Carp 1 meal/month

    Lake Champlain, whole lake (Multiple),

    Lake Trout over 25” & Walleye over 19” 1 meal/month

    • Bay within Cumberland Head Southwest to Peru Boat Launch (Clinton, Essex), Same as whole lake AND; American Eel & Yellow Perch DON’T EAT; Northern Pike 1 meal/month

    Lake Ontario See Waters with Family Advice

    Lewiston Reservoir/Power Reservoir

    (Niagara), Carp DON’T EAT

    Lofit’s Pond (Nassau), Carp & Goldfish 1 meal/month

    Upper Massapequa Reservoir (Nassau), Carp & White Perch 1 meal/month

    Massena Power Canal (St. Lawrence), Smallmouth Bass 1 meal/month

    Mohawk River, between Lock E21 at New London and Lock E20 at Whitesboro (Oneida), Carp 1 meal/month

    • Between Lock E20 at Whitesboro and Lock E18 at Jacksonburg (Herkimer & Oneida), Carp DON’T EAT; Largemouth Bass & Tiger Muskellunge 1 meal/month
  • Mohawk River, between Lock E18 at

Jacksonburg and Fivemile Dam below Little Falls (Herkimer), Carp 1 meal/month

Moodna Creek (Orange), Channel & White Catfish, Gizzard Shad, Smallmouth Bass, Walleye DON’T EAT; Blue Crab meat 1 meal/ month (~6 crabs), DON’T EAT tomalley; All other fish 1 meal/month

Mud Creek (Oneida), Brown Trout & White Sucker DON’T EAT

Nassau Lake (Rensselaer), All species DON’T EAT

Newburgh Area Waters, Beaverdam Lake, Stream from Stewart State Forest to Beaverdam Lake, Crestview Lake, Lockwood Basin/Masterson Park Pond, Moodna Creek upstream of Firtheclif Dam, Recreation Pond, Silver Stream, Washington Lake (Orange), All fish DON’T EAT

Niagara River See Waters with Family Advice

Onondaga Lake (Onondaga), Largemouth & Smallmouth Bass over 15”, Walleye, Carp, Channel Catfish & White Perch DON’T EAT; Brown Bullhead & Pumpkinseed 4 meals/ month; Smaller Smallmouth Bass, Smaller Largemouth Bass & all other fish not listed 1 meal/month

Oswego River, Varick Dam at Oswego

(Lock #8) to upper dam at Fulton (Lock #2) (Oswego), Channel Catfish 1 meal/month

• Mouth to Varick Dam at Oswego (Lock #8) See Lake Ontario in Waters with Family

Advice

Red Lake (Jefferson), Walleye 1 meal/month

Ridders Pond (Nassau), Goldfish DON’T EAT Rushford Lake (Allegany), Walleye 1 meal/ month

St. Lawrence River See Waters with Family Advice

Salmon River, Mouth to Salmon River Reservoir (Oswego), Smallmouth Bass 1 meal/month (and Lake Ontario Advice)

Salmon River (Clinton), Same advice as Lake Champlain, Bay within Cumberland Head Southwest to Peru Boat Launch

Salmon River Reservoir (Oswego), Largemouth & Smallmouth Bass 1 meal/ month

Sauquoit Creek, Mohawk River to Old Silk Mill Dam (near New Hartford/Paris town line) (Oneida), Brown Trout & White Sucker DON’T EAT

Saw Mill River (Westchester), American Eel 1 meal/month

Seneca River, Downstream of Lock 24 at Baldwinsville (Onondaga), See Onondaga Lake advisories

Sheldrake River (Westchester), American Eel DON’T EAT; Goldfish 1 meal/month

Six Mile Creek, Downstream of Gulf Rd. to mouth of Mohawk River (Oneida), All fish DON’T EAT

Skaneateles Creek See Waters with Family Advice Smith Pond at Rockville Centre (Nassau), American Eel, Carp, Goldfish & White Perch 1 meal/month

Smith Pond at Roosevelt Park (Nassau), American Eel DON’T EAT; Carp & Goldfish 1 meal/month

Spring Lake, Middle Island (Suffolk), Carp & Goldfish DON’T EAT

Stark Falls Reservoir (St. Lawrence), Northern Pike over 26” DON’T EAT

Thayers Pond, Hoosick Falls Area (Rensselaer), All fish DON’T EAT

Threemile Creek (Oneida), White Sucker 1 meal/month

Titicus Reservoir (Westchester), White Perch 1 meal/month

Unadilla River (Multiple), Walleye over 22” 1 meal/month

Upper Twin Pond (Nassau), American Eel & Carp 1 meal/month

Valatie Kill, between County Rte. 18 and Nassau Lake (Rensselaer), All species DON’T EAT

Waters with Family Advice Waters with new advice listed in blue.

Valatie Kill, between Nassau Lake and Kinderhook Lake (Rensselaer & Columbia), American Eel, Bluegill & Redbreast Sunfish 1 meal/month

West Branch Reservoir (Putnam), Walleye 1 meal/month Whitney Park Pond (Nassau), Carp & Goldfish 1 meal/month

Men Over 15 Women Over 50 Women Under 50 Children Under 15

Carmans River, above Southaven Dam (Suffolk)

American Eel

1 meal/month

DON’T EAT

Brown Bullhead

4 meals/month

4 meals/month

All other fish

4 meals/month

1 meal/month

Lake Erie and Niagara River upstream of Niagara Falls (Erie, Niagara)

Rock Bass, Yellow Perch, Burbot

4 meals/month

4 meals/month

Carp, Channel Catfish

1 meal/month

DON’T EAT

All Other Fish

4 meals/month

1 meal/month

Lake Ontario and St. Lawrence River (excluding area listed below) (Franklin, Jefferson, St. Lawrence)

Brown Bullhead, Rainbow Smelt, Rock

Bass, White Sucker, Yellow Perch

4 meals/month

4 meals/month

Lake Trout over 25” and Brown Trout over 20”

1 meal/month

1 meal/month

Carp

1 meal/month

DON’T EAT

Channel Catfish

1 meal/month

1 meal/month

Smaller Lake Trout and Brown Trout, and All other fish (including Chinook and

Coho Salmon)

4 meals/month

1 meal/month

St. Lawrence River, from South Channel Bridge (including Turtle Creek Cove) downstream to north end of Raquette Point (Navigation Light Number 11) (St. Lawrence)

All species

DON’T EAT

DON’T EAT

Niagara River, downstream of Niagara Falls

(Niagara)

Same advice as Lake Ontario except Lake Trout

Lake Trout

DON’T EAT

DON’T EAT

Skaneateles Creek, Skaneateles Lake Dam at Skaneateles to Seneca River

(Onondaga, Cayuga)

Brown and

Rainbow Trout

1 meal/month

1 meal/month

All other fish

4 meals/month

4 meals/month

Owasco Lake (Cayuga)

Smallmouth Bass, Walleye

1 meal/month

DON’T EAT

Rainbow Smelt, Rainbow Trout smaller than 20”, and Yellow Perch smaller than

10”

4 meals/month

4 meals/month

Rainbow Trout over 20”,

Yellow Perch over 10”, All other fish

4 meals/month

1 meal/month

Tips for Healthier Eating

  • To reduce exposures to mercury, avoid or eat less largemouth and smallmouth bass, northern pike, pickerel, walleye, and larger yellow perch, particularly in the Adirondack and Catskill regions.
  • To reduce exposures to PCBs, dioxin, mirex, DDT, chlordane, and dieldrin, avoid or eat less American eel, bluefish, carp, lake trout, salmon (chinook, coho), striped bass, weakfish, white and channel catfish, and white perch because these fish tend to have higher

levels of these contaminants. Follow the trim and skin recommendations in the diagram to further reduce these chemicals.

  • When deciding which sportfish to eat, choose smaller fish within a species because they may have lower contaminant levels.
  • Visit www.health.ny.gov/fish/tips for more helpful tips.

More Information

New York State Department of Health

www.health.ny.gov/fish

518-402-7800; 800-458-1158 BTSA@health.ny.gov

For information on contaminants in sportfish:

DEC Bureau of Ecosystem Health

518-402-8920