MDCH to Post Informational Signs about Fish Consumption

Contact: James McCurtis, Jr. (517) 241-2112
Agency: Community Health

April 26, 2010

LANSING, MI - On April 29, 2010, informational signs about fish consumption will be posted at many sites along the Detroit River that will help local anglers identify the fish that are safe to eat from the river, as well as which fish to avoid.

Due to historic chemical contamination in the Detroit River, several fish - including catfish and carp - are unsafe to eat, especially for children and women, ages 15-45 years old. However, there are other fish, such as yellow perch, that are safer to eat on a regular basis.

The Friends of the Detroit River, in conjunction with the Michigan Department of Community Health, Detroit Department of Health and Wellness Promotion, Detroit Recreation Department, Detroiters Working for Environmental Justice, Michigan Department of Natural Resources-Fisheries Division, Michigan State University Extension, Michigan State University Sea Grant, University of Toledo, Wayne County Health Department and Wayne State University have worked to identify sites along the river that are popular with local fishermen.

Volunteers from these groups will be posting advisory signs in various locations along the river on April 29. The goal is to educate people about the State's fish consumption advisory for the river.

The signs depict how to remove fat from the fillets, which helps remove some of the chemical contamination. The signs also direct people to lakes in the Detroit area where catfish and carp can be caught that are safer to eat and are less contaminated than those found in the Detroit River.

Special thanks to the Detroit Recreation Department, DTE Energy, and the cities of Ecorse, Gross Pointe, Riverview, Trenton and Wyandotte, along with the Huron-Clinton Metroparks for allowing this important message to be posted. More information about the Detroit River fish consumption advisory can be obtained at www.michigan.gov/eatsafefish or by calling 1-800-648-6942.

Local media is invited to come out to cover this important event.

Members of the press are invited to join us at Riverside Park (near the Ambassador Bridge) at 4:15pm on 4/29/2010 for photos and interviews related to the sign posting. Please contact Kory Groetsch or Michelle Bruneau of the Michigan Department of Community Health at 1-800-648-6942 for more information.