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Studies Focus on the Health of Washington D.C.'s Rivers

Date Posted: June 22, 2001

The Chesapeake Bay Field Office (CBFO) will be continuing to focus on health of the Anacostia River in Washington, D.C. this year. Field work will involve collecting more brown bullheads, a species of catfish, from the Anacostia and Potomac Rivers to look for tumors. A new project will involve collecting water samples during wet and dry periods to evaluate the water’s affect on young fish. The tests are aimed at determining whether attempts to restore species of fish that migrate from the sea to spawn in the watershed may be hindered by toxic conditions that the young fish may encounter as they drift downstream. In addition, CBFO staff will be working with the Wye Lab on a study of endocrine (hormone) disruption in carp from the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers. Finally, there’ll be a study of the contaminant concentrations in invertebrates and fish from the newly restored Kingman Lake section of the Anacostia. Aside from the field work, a number of reports are nearing completion including an analysis of fish contaminant concentration data for the District of Columbia, which is updating its fish advisory. CBFO staff will be serving on a Fish Advisory Panel for the EPA Chesapeake Bay Program which is evaluating monitoring efforts and outreach in the District, Maryland, and Virginia. Look for CBFO’s bullhead tumor paper in the June 2001 issue of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry.

Contacts:

Fred Pinkney 410-573-4519

Links:

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. News and Activities: Anacostia River Restoration - Washington, D.C.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Evaluating the Health of the Potomac River Watershed: High Rate of Tumors in Catfish from the Anacostia Rvier in Washington, D.C.

Last updated: February 13, 2013