Reference (2022-23 NM Fishing Rules & Info, p. 36)

Are My Fish Safe to Eat?

Tests have shown many of New Mexico’s waters are contaminated with mercury, PCBs and in some instances DDT. To help anglers make informed choices about what can be safely eaten, the following consumption advisories by region are provided on the pages 36–40. Occasional consumption of fish from these waters does not constitute a substantial health risk, however higher consumption over a longer period of time could result in health problems. These advisories are guidelines only and do not suggest any health risks from camping, swimming or boating in these waters. Also, handling fish will not result in exposure to dangerous contaminants.

How To Use the Consumption Advisory Chart

The following table is a consumption advisory only. Some listings may be under the legal minimum length limit (such as walleye and largemouth and smallmouth bass). Legal length limits for all species apply when fishing.

Catch, Release or Eat? (2022-23)

Determine the species and length (inches) of the fish and find the lake or river where it was caught. Match the species (row) and size (column) of your fish to determine the number of meals (8 ounces) that can be safely eaten each month. No advisory (NA) indicates an advisory is unnecessary, and 0 (zero) indicates it is recommended not to eat that species and size of fish. If blank, the species and size of fish at that location has not been analyzed.

Additional Resources

For specific questions about these advisories, contact the New Mexico Environment Department – Surface Water Quality Bureau at: (505) 827-2470.

For questions about health concerns relating to consumption of contaminants, contact the New Mexico Department of Health–Environmental Health Epidemiology Bureau at: 1-888-878-8992.

Further information is also available online at the following websites: