Commercial Fishing Ban in Place

Some fish found in Alabama's rivers are not fit for human consumption.  For the first time, conservation officials have banned commercial fishing in the state's polluted waters.

Commercial species such as catfish, drum, buffalo, and sucker fish are not safe to eat.  Corky Pugh, director of the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources' wildlife and freshwater fisheries division, said the state implemented a new regulation last week making it illegal to fish for commercial species in water bodies with fish advisories. Another rule makes it illegal to sell fish from the polluted waters.

Violators face up to a $500 fine. Pugh said such fish species as Largemouth Bass and Crappie are already off limits to commercial anglers for conservation reasons.

Water bodies in Alabama where commercial fishing of catfish, sucker drum and buffalo is banned because fish consumption advisories are in place.

Includes county, portion of water body, and type of contamination.

- Choccolocco Creek; Calhoun and Talladega; entire longth of the creek from south of Oxford, downstream to where the creek flows into Logan Martin Lake; PCBs.

- Cold Creek Swamp; Mobile; from confluence of Cold Creek with the Mobile River west through the swamp; Mercury.

- Coosa River; Cherokee; Georgia state line and Weiss Dam; PCBs. - Coosa River; Calhoun, St. Clair, Talladega; between Neely Henry Dam and Riverside; PCBs.

- Coosa River; St. Clair, Talladega; Between Riverside and Vincent, including the Logan Martin Reservoir; PCBs.

- Coosa River; St. Clair, Shelby, Talladega; between Logan Martin Dam and railrood tracks crossing the river near Vincent.

- Coosa River; Chilton, Coosa, Shelby, St. Clair and Talladega; between Logan Martin Dam and Lay Dam; PCBs.

- Coosa River; Etowah; in the Croft Ferry area of Neely Henry Reservoir; PCBs.

- Huntsville Spring Branch and Indian Creek; Madison; from Redstone Arsenal to the Tennessee River; DDT.

- Styx River; Baldwin; entire river; Mercury.

- Tombigbee River; Washington; at rivermile; Mercury.

Source: Alabama Department of Public Health.