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News Release

RI Department of Environmental Management
235 Promenade St., Providence, RI 02908
(401) 222-2771 TDD/(401) 222-4462

For Release:

April 6, 2000


DOH- Robert Vanderslice, PhD (222-3424 ext. 2103)
DEM- Gail Mastrati (222-4700 ext. 2402)


Thousands of residents and tourists will flock to Rhode Island's freshwater rivers and ponds for the opening of trout season on April 8. For many, part of the enjoyment of fishing is eating the fish caught that day.

Those who enjoy eating fish may already be aware of the health benefits associated with making fish part of a healthy diet.* However, because fish have the potential to accumulate water pollutants, not all fish are as safe to eat as the trout that are raised in hatcheries.

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) and the Rhode Island Department of Health (HEALTH) remind those who eat the fish they catch of a few simple tips for reducing exposures to contaminants in fish:


  • Fish in different places to vary your diet.
  • Choose smaller fish to eat.
  • Choose stocked trout, sunfish or similar fish to eat.
  • Check the HEALTH website at to find fish with low mercury levels.

In addition to this advice for choosing the safest fish to eat, HEALTH has issued several advisories concerning fish which have accumulated unsafe levels of contaminants.


Do not eat any fish from the Woonasquatucket River below the Smithfield line.

Do not eat bass from the Quidnick Reservoir

Eat no more than one meal per month of the following saltwater fish: striped bass, bluefish, swordfish and shark.

*For better health, HEALTH recommends a low-fat diet including grains, fruits, vegetables and lowfat dairy products, with smaller amounts of high protein foods like fish, shellfish and meat. For information on shellfish, call 1-800-222-2900 or check the shellfish closure map on the Providence Journal weather page or the DEM website

For General Information 222-6800 • After Hours Emergencies 222-3070 • Disclaimer