SACRAMENTO, Aug. 23, 2019 – A state fish advisory issued today for Lake Spaulding in Nevada County provides safe eating advice for Inland Silverside, Rainbow Trout, and Sacramento Pikeminnow.

The California Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) developed the recommendations based on the levels of mercury found in fish caught from the lake.

“Many fish have nutrients that may reduce the risk of heart disease and are excellent sources of protein,” said Dr. Lauren Zeise, director of OEHHA. “By following our guidelines for fish caught in Lake Spaulding, people can safely eat fish low in chemical contaminants and enjoy the well-known health benefits of fish consumption.”

Lake Spaulding is located approximately 26 miles northeast of Nevada City.

When consuming fish from Lake Spaulding, women ages 18-49 and children ages 1-17 should not eat Sacramento Pikeminnow. They may safely eat a maximum of five total servings per week of Rainbow Trout, or four servings per week of Inland Silverside.

Women ages 50 and older and men ages 18 and older should not eat Sacramento Pikeminnow. They may safely eat a maximum of seven total servings per week of Inland Silverside or Rainbow Trout.

One serving is an eight-ounce fish fillet, measured prior to cooking, which is roughly the size and thickness of your hand. Children should be given smaller servings. For small fish species, several individual fish may make up a single serving.

A poster with the safe-eating advice for Lake Spaulding is available on OEHHA’s website in both English and Spanish. For fish species found in Lake Spaulding that are not included in this advisory, OEHHA recommends following the statewide advisory for eating fish from California lakes and reservoirs without site-specific advice.

Mercury is a naturally occurring metal that is released into the environment from mining and burning coal. It accumulates in fish in the form of methylmercury, which can damage the brain and nervous system, especially in developing children and fetuses. Because of this, OEHHA provides a separate set of recommendations specifically for children up to age 17, and women of childbearing age (18-49 years).

Eating fish in amounts slightly greater than the advisory’s recommendations based on mercury is not likely to cause health problems if it is done occasionally, such as eating fish caught during an annual vacation.

Lake Spaulding advisory recommendations join more than 100 other OEHHA advisories that provide site-specific, health-based fish consumption advice for many of the places where people catch and eat fish in California, including lakes, rivers, bays, reservoirs, and the California coast. Advisories are available on OEHHA’s Fish Advisories webpage.

OEHHA’s mission is to protect and enhance the health of Californians and our state’s environment through scientific evaluations that inform, support, and guide regulatory and other actions.