California EPA issues advisory for certain fish from Stevens Creek reservoir

Black Crappie in an undated photo (Photo courtesy U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

A state regulatory agency issued an updated advisory this week for eating certain fish in Stevens Creek Reservoir in Santa Clara County because of elevated mercury levels.

The California Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment issued the advisory for black bass species, common carp, crappie species and the Sacramento sucker if they are caught at the reservoir in the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Women ages 18-49 and any children 17 and under should not eat black bass or crappie from the reservoir, but may east one serving per week of common carp or Sacramento sucker. Any men 18 and older and women 50 and older should not eat black bass but may eat two servings a week of common carp or Sacramento sucker or one serving of crappie, according to the OEHHA.

The agency considers a serving an 8-ounce fish fillet and says the mercury from mining or other industrial activities accumulates in fish in the form of methylmercury, which can damage the brain or nervous system, particularly in children and fetuses.

A list of all fish advisories statewide can be found here.