Aquatic Life

The amount of cadmium, copper, lead, silver, zinc, and pH (acidity)in several streams in the Upper Uncompahgre Watershed do not meet standards used to protect aquatic life. Fish, macroinvertebrates, and other aquatic species are often more sensitive to metals than humans because these species spend most of their lives in or near water, including during very sensitive early stages of life. As a result, aquatic-life standards often are more stringent and more protective than human-health standards. So, eating limited amounts of local fish is safe for your health.

The image below from the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment has guidelines for eating fish including those commonly found in our watershed like several trout species, Kokanee salmon and smallmouth bass. You can download to save or print your own copy of the image with this file link.