EVALUATION OF FISH CONSUMPTION ADVISORY FOR LAKE ALAN HENRY, TEXAS AND COMPARISON OF THE ADVISORY METHODS OF THE STATES OF TEXAS, CALIFORNIA, AND ALASKA.
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In 2008, the Seafood and Aquatic Life Group (SALG) at Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) issued a fish consumption advisory for two predatory fish species (Largemouth and Alabama Spotted Bass) harvested from Lake Alan Reservoir, Texas. This study was conducted to examine the Mercury (Hg) concentration in those fish species from the same lake to determine whether the existing fish consumption advisory should be revisited. In addition, the methods used in Texas were compared to those used in the states of California and Alaska. Eight Largemouth Bass and five Alabama Spotted Bass fish tissue samples were collected in accordance to SALG Standard Operating Procedures and QC/QA manual, and analyzed in the Geochemical and Environmental Research Group (GERG) laboratory for total Hg concentrations using the Cold Vapor Atomic Absorption Spectrometry. Risk characterization was done by comparing the fish tissue Hg concentrations to comparison values derived from the ASTDR’s Minimal Risk Level, USEPA Reference Dose and Alaska-Specific Acceptable Daily Intake for the States of Texas, California and Alaska, respectively. This study showed no significant difference (p=0.13, p>0.05) in Largemouth Bass Hg concentrations when compared with the previous study. In contrast, Hg concentration in Alabama Spotted Bass did not exceed the comparison value and therefore disagrees with the SALG’s previous study. Therefore a revisit of the site by the DSHS is required. However, the State of California’s methods suggest a likelihood of adverse human health effects when both fish species are consumed, whereas an absence of risk from consumption of both fish species is suggested using the State of Alaska’s method.