There was a line in yesterday’s blog about radioactive fish that stated while radiation may sound alarming, in truth mercury is a much bigger public safety hazard. Maybe there’s something to that…

From this story in the Tulsa World:
Catch a large striped bass in the Broken Bow Reservoir and you might as well throw it back. The bass isn’t safe to eat, according to a Mercury in Fish study released Wednesday. Sixteen state lakes have some species of fish with mercury levels above what is considered safe for unlimited consumption, according to the report released by the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality. The advisory on striped ˜ or hybrid ˜ bass at Broken Bow includes consumption by both sensitive and general populations. Sensitive populations include women of child-bearing age and children 15 and younger. The study also advises sensitive populations not to eat walleye or white bass caught at Broken Bow. Sensitive populations also should not eat white bass caught from McGee Creek Reservoir in Atoka County

And this story in the San Francisco Chronicle:
Researchers have found toxic mercury in fish caught at a reservoir that provides water to 2.5 million people in the San Francisco Bay area. Authorities say largemouth bass taken from Lower Crystal Springs Reservoir in San Mateo County had some of the highest mercury levels in the state. However, the contamination doesn’t indicate that the water itself is unsafe. The mercury was detected by researchers at the San Francisco Estuary Institute, who sampled sport fish at nearly 300 California lakes for mercury and other contaminants. The results, released last month, found that 21 percent of the lakes had at least one fish species with a mercury level considered unsafe to eat by children.

It’s enough to make you reach for a bottle of Prozac, until you realize that in addition to mercury through industrial pollution, vast amounts of prescription medications are making their way into our waterways, too, and doing weird things to our fish.