Eighteen Mile Creek in Niagara County is badly polluted, so much so that the state health department doesn’t want people to eat the fish. But the toxic hotspot hasn’t stopped the state Department of Environmental Conservation and local governments from promoting the creek as a fishing destination.
It’s 6 A.M. when trucks and SUVS begin pulling into an empty parking lot in Girard, Pennsylvania, a town outside of Erie with about 3,000 people. The vehicles bear license plates from Ohio, Pennsylvania and Delaware.
The big, strong Chinook salmon is a favorite of anglers on the Great Lakes. But New York and Michigan are reducing the number of Chinook they stock in the lakes and some are worried it could hurt the region's sport fishing economy.
State environmental conservation and Erie County parks officials marked Earth Day by releasing thousands of fish into Cayuga Creek. At Como Lake Park, the creek was being stocked and officials were promoting fishing at inland waterways.
While fishing is a popular sport, it's also an inexpensive way for some people to put food on the table. The government issues advisories on fish consumption and as WBFO's Chris Caya reports, a new resource is available to help people get those warnings quickly and eat fish in a healthier way.