Department of Environmental Conservation

D E C banner

Bureau of Ecosystem Health

The mission of the Bureau of Ecosystem Health is to protect, maintain, enhance and restore ecosystems so that they support a diverse and productive fish and wildlife resource that allows a wide array of uses. Programs include environmental monitoring of contaminants in the environment; protection of wetlands, streams and other aquatic habitats; impact analysis related to energy production via wind, hydro and steam-electric power plants; restoration of habitats impaired by contaminants and other stressors; risk assessments for pesticides, and development of standards and criteria for protection of fish and wildlife. Staff are assigned to the DEC Central Office, Hale Creek Field Station and Rome Field Station, as well as regional offices.

Hale Creek Field Station

182 Steele Avenue Extension, Gloversville, NY 12078
Contact: Tim Martin, Facility Coordinator
518-773-7318, FAX 5118-773-7319

The Hale Creek Field Station in Gloversville was established by the NYSDEC as a multi-disciplinary research facility in 1979. The Field Station includes a main analytical laboratory/ office complex with external chemical storage and maintenance buildings, eight hatchery ponds, four outdoor raceways and a residence, all situated on about 80 acres of State-owned land. A brass plaque in the lobby states that the facility is devoted to "safeguard fish and wildlife resources through the protection of habitat quality." Bureau of Ecosystem Health (BOEH) staff permanently stationed at the facility are assigned to several Units including the Analytical Services Unit, the Quality Assurance Unit and the Terrestrial Toxicant Research Unit. In addition, this facility serves as a satellite office, laboratory and field station for work by BOEH staff from the Aquatic Toxicant Research Unit, the Ecotoxicology and Standards Unit, and the Natural Resource Damages Section.

Analytical Services
The analytical laboratory at the Hale Creek Field Station provides reliable chemical analysis of fish and wildlife samples from throughout New York State. In the past 30 years, it has analyzed thousands of fish, mammals, birds and invertebrates for a variety of contaminants. The current specialty of the Analytical Services Unit (ASU) is the analysis of fish tissues for toxic and persistent chemical contaminants such as mercury, PCBs DDT, Chlordane, mirex, hexachlorobenzene and others. A primary function of the ASU is to provide information on fish contaminant concentrations to the New York State Department of Health for the identification of fish consumption advisories. Data are also used by the US Environmental Protection Agency and others to identify sources of contaminants, evaluate the effects of contaminants, help enforce environmental laws, and improve environmental health.

Rome Field Station

8314 Fish Hatchery Road, Rome, NY 13440
Contact: Eric Paul
315-337-0910; 315-337-0988 (fax)

The Rome Field Station is located at the Rome Fish Hatchery and houses the Bureau's Aquatic Toxicant Research Unit. The station contains a laboratory for basic water chemistry analyses, and aquatic toxicity testing, as well as facilities for rearing fish and storage of equipment. Excellent supplies of spring water and water from Lake Delta are a key asset of the field station. Research has focused on the effects of acid precipitation, pesticides and other chemical contaminants on fish and other aquatic life.