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Final Report issued on the Navajo Nation Lake Fish and Water Quality Investigation
Southwest Region, July 19, 2005
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On July 19, 2005, the New Mexico Ecological Services Field Office (NMESFO), in conjunction with the Navajo Nation Environmental Protection Agency (Navajo Nation EPA), completed a study of methylmercury and other environmental contaminants in water and fish at four Navajo Nation lakes. The NMESFO issued a final report available for download from the webpage at the URL http://ifw2es.fws.gov/NewMexico/EC_reports.shtml. The goal of the Navajo Nation Lake Fish and Water Quality Investigation was to provide data that could be used to evaluate mercury risks to bald eagles and people. Samples of fish were collected from Asaayi Lake, Morgan Lake, Red Lake and Wheatfields Lake. Completion of this investigation represents a first step toward understanding the distribution of mercury in fish and allows the Navajo Nation to protect its people from harm by environmental contaminants as well as identify and manage the health risks posed to bald eagles and other fish-eating wildlife. During the investigation, the NMESFO also provided training and information on water quality and local fish and wildlife as well as high quality methylmercury data for the development of fish consumption advisories and a science-based methylmercury criterion to protect bald eagles. This investigation was cooperatively funded by a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Navajo Nation EPA, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Environmental Contaminants Program.

Contact Info: Martin Valdez, 505-248-6599, martin_valdez@fws.gov



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