Mercury in the Environment

Fish Consumption Recommendations

The Nevada Department of Wildlife, the Nevada Division of Environmental protection, and the Division of Public and Behavioral Health (formerly Nevada State Health Division) have been working together to identify potential health risks to the public through monitoring methylmercury in fish from around the state.

Nevada lakes, reservoirs, ponds, rivers, and streams contain mercury, which is converted into methylmercury by bacteria in the sediments. Methylmercury eventually moves up through the food chain to the top predatory fishes where it can concentrate in their muscle tissue. Generally, larger, older fish concentrate more mercury than smaller ones.

The Nevada Department of Wildlife collects sport fish species from fishing waters at sizes typically caught and eaten by anglers. The Nevada Division of Environmental Protection works with the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency to provide mercury analysis of these fish. From the information collected, the Division of Public and Behavioral Health recommends not consuming certain fish species from seven northern Nevada waters due to elevated mercury levels. These include:

  • No consumption of any fish from Carson River to Lahontan Dam, including all water in Lahontan Valley.
  • No consumption of white bass from Little and Big Washoe Lake.
  • No consumption of wipers and walleye from Rye Patch Reservoir.
  • No consumption of walleye from Chimney Dam Reservoir.
  • No consumption of largemouth bass and northern pike from Comins Lake.

The bottom line is that Nevadans should feel free to enjoy fishing in the state's waters and to enjoy fish they catch as an important and healthy part of their diet. When fishing in waters where no fish consumption recommendations are in effect, pregnant women, nursing mothers and children should limit their consumption of fish, eat smaller fish (rather than larger ones), or practice catch-and-release. Please see links below for more information regarding fish in your diet and health impacts from eating fish containing mercury.

Meal Size

An adult meal size is considered to be 8-ounces of fish meat, about the size of two decks of cards. Children should eat smaller, age-appropriate amounts. Click on the links below* for advice for pregnant and breastfeeding women and children and fish consumption in general.

Consider how much fish from all sources (caught and purchased) that you are likely to eat in a month and follow the recommendations accordingly. Space your meals of fish evenly during the month when eating fish that have consumption recommendations. For example, the consumption recommendation for brown trout from the Carson River near the Bryant Creek confluence is 8-meals per month. This should be spaced out to 2-meals per week, rather than eating the entire 8-meals in a few days time. Removing the skin does not decrease the amount of mercury in the edible portions.

Region County Water Name Species Meals Per Month
Eastern Elko Angel Lake brook trout 4
Eastern Elko Blue Jacket Creek rainbow trout 4
Eastern Elko Bruneau River rainbow trout 4
Eastern Elko Burns Creek brook trout 16
Eastern Elko Cave Creek brown trout 8
Eastern Elko Copper Creek redband trout 8
Eastern Elko Emerald Lake brook trout 4
Eastern Elko Foreman Creek lahontan cutthroat trout 4
Eastern Elko Gance Creek lahontan cutthroat trout 16
Eastern Elko Humboldt River smallmouth bass 1
Eastern Elko Humboldt River bullhead catfish 8
Eastern Elko Humboldt River, North Fork brook trout 12
Eastern Elko Humboldt River, South Fork wiper 0
Eastern Elko Humboldt River, South Fork brown trout 2
Eastern Elko Humboldt River, South Fork rainbow trout 2
Eastern Elko Jakes Creek Reservoir rainbow trout 12
Eastern Elko Jakes Creek Reservoir largemouth bass 2
Eastern Elko Jarbidge River, West Fork rainbow trout 16
Eastern Elko Lamoille Creek brook trout 16
Eastern Elko Lamoille Lake brook trout 12
Eastern Elko Mill Creek rainbow trout 8
Eastern Elko Overland Lake brook trout 2
Eastern Elko Owyhee River, East Fork yellow perch 4
Eastern Elko Owyhee River, East Fork brown trout 4
Eastern Elko Owyhee River, East Fork rainbow trout 4
Eastern Elko Owyhee River, East Fork rainbow trout 4
Eastern Elko Owyhee River, East Fork brook trout 4
Eastern Elko Owyhee River, East Fork yellow perch 4
Eastern Elko Owyhee River, South Fork smallmouth bass 0.5
Eastern Elko Pearl Creek brook trout 16
Eastern Elko Pine Creek brown trout 4
Eastern Elko Ruby Lake rainbow trout 4
Eastern Elko Ruby Lake largemouth bass 4
Eastern Elko Salmon Falls River rainbow trout 4
Eastern Elko Salmon Falls River brown trout 4
Eastern Elko Sheep Creek redband trout 4
Eastern Elko Smith Lake lahontan cutthroat trout 8
Eastern Elko South Fork Reservoir brown trout 8
Eastern Elko South Fork Reservoir bowcutt trout 4
Eastern Elko South Fork Reservoir rainbow trout 4
Eastern Elko Tabor Creek rainbow trout 16
Eastern Elko Trail Creek brook trout 8
Eastern Elko Wild Horse Reservoir smallmouth bass 1
Eastern Elko Wild Horse Reservoir rainbow trout 4
Eastern Elko Wild Horse Reservoir channel catfish 1
Eastern Elko Wild Horse Reservoir wiper 1
Eastern Elko Wild Horse Reservoir yellow perch 2
Eastern Elko Wild Horse Reservoir walleye 1
Eastern Elko Wild Horse Reservoir brown trout 8
Eastern Elko Willow Creek Reservoir white crappie 1
Eastern Elko Wilson Creek rainbow trout 12
Eastern Elko Wilson Sink Reservoir rainbow trout 4
Eastern Elko Wilson Sink Reservoir largemouth bass 4
Eastern Eureka Barth Pit smallmouth bass 2
Eastern Eureka Barth Pit bluegill sunfish 2
Eastern Eureka Barth Pit green sunfish 1
Eastern Eureka Roberts Creek brook trout 12
Eastern Eureka Tonkin Reservoir rainbow trout 4
Eastern Lander Birch Creek brown trout 16
Eastern Lander Birch Creek brook trout 16
Eastern Lander Birch Creek brown trout 16
Eastern Lander Kingston Creek brown trout 16
Eastern Lander Willow Creek Pond rainbow trout 16
Eastern Lander Willow Creek Pond brown trout 4
Eastern Lander Willow Creek Pond yellow perch 8
Eastern White Pine Bassett Lake carp 16
Eastern White Pine Cave Lake rainbow trout 12
Eastern White Pine Cave Lake brown trout 12
Eastern White Pine Cleve Creek brown trout 8
Eastern White Pine Cleve Creek rainbow trout 8
Eastern White Pine Cold Creek Reservoir rainbow trout 12
Eastern White Pine Comins Lake largemouth bass 0
Eastern White Pine Comins Lake rainbow trout 1
Eastern White Pine Illipah Creek rainbow trout 16
Eastern White Pine Illipah Reservoir rainbow trout 12
Eastern White Pine Lehman Creek rainbow trout 8
Eastern White Pine Lehman Creek brown trout 12
Eastern White Pine McCoy Creek rainbow trout 12
Eastern White Pine Silver Creek Reservoir brown trout 3
Eastern White Pine Snake Creek brown trout 8
Eastern White Pine Steptoe Creek brown trout 8
Eastern White Pine Steptoe Creek brown trout 3
Eastern White Pine Tailings Creek brook trout 16
Eastern White Pine Timber Creek rainbow trout 8
Eastern White Pine White River brown trout 4
Eastern White Pine White River rainbow trout 16
Eastern White Pine Willow Creek brown trout 8
Southern Clark Colorado River carp 16
Southern Clark Floyd Lamb Park Pond largemouth bass 12
Southern Clark Lake Mead striped bass 4
Southern Clark Lake Mead striped bass 4
Southern Clark Lake Mead largemouth bass 4
Southern Clark Lake Mead largemouth bass 4
Southern Clark Lake Mead channel catfish 4
Southern Clark Lake Mead striped bass 4
Southern Clark Lake Mead largemouth bass 16
Southern Clark Lake Mead channel catfish 8
Southern Clark Lake Mead largemouth bass 16
Southern Clark Lake Mead channel catfish 12
Southern Clark Lake Mead carp 8
Southern Clark Lake Mohave channel catfish 8
Southern Clark Lake Mohave striped bass 4
Southern Clark Lake Mohave carp 12
Southern Clark Lake Mohave largemouth bass 4
Southern Esmeralda Chiatovich Creek brook trout 16
Southern Lincoln Eagle Valley Reservoir rainbow trout 16
Southern Lincoln Echo Canyon Reservoir rainbow trout 4
Southern Lincoln Nesbitt Lake bluegill sunfish 3
Southern Lincoln Nesbitt Lake largemouth bass 2
Southern Lincoln Nesbitt Lake bullhead catfish 3
Southern Lincoln Pahranagat Lake, Upper carp 16
Southern Lincoln Pahranagat Lake, Upper largemouth bass 4
Southern Nye Stewart Creek brown trout 8
Southern Nye Stewart Creek brook trout 8
Western Churchill Carson River carp 0
Western Churchill Carson River smallmouth bass 0
Western Churchill Indian Lakes white bass 1
Western Churchill Indian Lakes carp 1
Western Churchill Indian Lakes channel catfish 3
Western Churchill Lahontan Reservoir white catfish 0
Western Churchill Lahontan Reservoir carp 0
Western Churchill Lahontan Reservoir white bass 0
Western Churchill Lahontan Reservoir yellow perch 0
Western Churchill Lahontan Reservoir smallmouth bass 0
Western Churchill Lahontan Reservoir walleye 0
Western Churchill Lahontan Reservoir channel catfish 0
Western Churchill Lahontan Reservoir white crappie 0
Western Churchill Lahontan Reservoir black crappie 0
Western Churchill Lahontan Reservoir largemouth bass 0
Western Churchill Lahontan Reservoir wiper 0
Western Douglas Carson River, East Fork rainbow trout 8
Western Douglas Carson River, East Fork mountain whitefish 12
Western Douglas Carson River, East Fork mountain whitefish 12
Western Douglas Carson River, East Fork mountain whitefish 4
Western Douglas Carson River, East Fork rainbow trout 4
Western Douglas Carson River, East Fork rainbow trout 12
Western Douglas Carson River, East Fork brown trout 4
Western Douglas Carson River, East Fork brown trout 8
Western Douglas Spooner Lake rainbow trout 16
Western Douglas Topaz Lake smallmouth bass 1
Western Douglas Topaz Lake rainbow trout 4
Western Humboldt Andorno Creek lahontan cutthroat trout 16
Western Humboldt Battle Creek, North Fork lahontan cutthroat trout 8
Western Humboldt Big Creek brown trout 16
Western Humboldt Bilk Creek Reservoir largemouth bass 3
Western Humboldt Bilk Creek Reservoir rainbow trout 4
Western Humboldt Chimney Reservoir yellow perch 2
Western Humboldt Chimney Reservoir carp 1
Western Humboldt Chimney Reservoir walleye 0
Western Humboldt Chimney Reservoir black crappie 0.5
Western Humboldt Chimney Reservoir white crappie 0.5
Western Humboldt Colman Creek lahontan cutthroat trout 12
Western Humboldt Dufurrena Ponds yellow perch 4
Western Humboldt Dufurrena Ponds white crappie 8
Western Humboldt Dufurrena Ponds largemouth bass 4
Western Humboldt Humboldt River, Little, NF brown trout 2
Western Humboldt Knott Creek Reservoir bowcutt trout 2
Western Humboldt Knott Creek Reservoir rainbow trout 2
Western Humboldt Knott Creek Reservoir tiger trout 2
Western Humboldt Martin Creek rainbow trout 8
Western Humboldt Onion Valley Reservoir rainbow trout 4
Western Humboldt Onion Valley Reservoir bowcutt trout 4
Western Humboldt Onion Valley Reservoir tiger trout 4
Western Lyon Carson River smallmouth bass 0
Western Lyon Fort Churchill Cooling Pond channel catfish 12
Western Lyon Fort Churchill Cooling Pond largemouth bass 4
Western Lyon Hinkson Slough bluegill sunfish 4
Western Lyon Hinkson Slough largemouth bass 4
Western Lyon Walker River, East Fork brown trout 4
Western Lyon Walker River, East Fork rainbow trout 2
Western Lyon Walker River, East Fork rainbow trout 1
Western Lyon Walker River, East Fork mountain whitefish 4
Western Lyon Walker River, East Fork brown trout 3
Western Lyon Walker River, East Fork brown trout 3
Western Lyon Walker River, East Fork mountain whitefish 4
Western Lyon Walker River, West Fork rainbow trout 8
Western Lyon Walker River, West Fork brown trout 4
Western Mineral Bodie Creek rainbow trout 1
Western Mineral Rough Creek rainbow trout 2
Western Mineral Walker River lahontan cutthroat trout 3
Western Pershing Coyote Creek brown trout 8
Western Pershing Humboldt River carp 1
Western Pershing Humboldt River (below RPR) carp 2
Western Pershing Rye Patch Reservoir (RPR) white crappie 1
Western Pershing Rye Patch Reservoir (RPR) wiper 0
Western Pershing Rye Patch Reservoir (RPR) green sunfish 0
Western Pershing Rye Patch Reservoir (RPR) yellow perch 1
Western Pershing Rye Patch Reservoir (RPR) bullhead catfish 1
Western Pershing Rye Patch Reservoir (RPR) walleye 0
Western Pershing Rye Patch Reservoir (RPR) carp 2
Western Pershing Rye Patch Reservoir (RPR) black crappie 1
Western Pershing Sonoma Creek rainbow trout 16
Western Pershing Star Creek rainbow trout 16
Western Washoe Catnip Reservoir lahontan cutthroat trout 4
Western Washoe Galena Creek rainbow trout 16
Western Washoe Galena Creek brook trout 12
Western Washoe Hobart Reservoir tiger trout 12
Western Washoe Hobart Reservoir rainbow trout 16
Western Washoe Hobart Reservoir brook trout 4
Western Washoe Hunter Creek rainbow trout 16
Western Washoe Lake Tahoe rainbow trout 4
Western Washoe Lake Tahoe mackinaw trout 16
Western Washoe Marlette Lake rainbow trout 16
Western Washoe Sparks Marina carp 4
Western Washoe Sparks Marina spotted bass 4
Western Washoe Sparks Marina smallmouth bass 4
Western Washoe Sparks Marina Sacramento perch 4
Western Washoe Sparks Marina rainbow trout 16
Western Washoe Sparks Marina green sunfish 4
Western Washoe Sparks Marina channel catfish 16
Western Washoe Squaw Valley Reservoir largemouth bass 16
Western Washoe Squaw Valley Reservoir bullhead catfish 16
Western Washoe Thomas Creek rainbow trout 12
Western Washoe Truckee River mountain whitefish 12
Western Washoe Truckee River mountain whitefish 12
Western Washoe Truckee River rainbow trout 16
Western Washoe Truckee River brown trout 16
Western Washoe Truckee River carp 3
Western Washoe Truckee River brown trout 16
Western Washoe Virginia Lake green sunfish 16
Western Washoe Virginia Lake carp 16
Western Washoe Wall Canyon Reservoir brown trout 4
Western Washoe Wall Canyon Reservoir rainbow trout 4
Western Washoe Wall Canyon Reservoir smallmouth bass 4
Western Washoe Washoe Lake carp 0
Western Washoe Washoe Lake white bass 0
Western Washoe Washoe Lake white bass 0
Western Washoe Washoe Lake Sacramento perch 0
Western Washoe Washoe Lake Sacramento perch 0
Western Washoe Washoe Lake carp 0
Western Washoe Whites Creek rainbow trout 8
Western Washoe Whites Creek brook trout 8