Department of Environmental Conservation

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Environmental Monitoring

Gas Chromatograph used for contaminant analysis
Gas Chromatograph used for analyzing organic
chemical contaminants such as PCBs

The Environmental Monitoring Section in the DFWMR Bureau of Ecosystem Health annually plans, carries out and reports on biological monitoring related to:

  • contaminant trackdown
  • fish consumption advisories
  • contaminated site cleanup
  • biotic disturbances in the aquatic environmental resulting from pesticides, other chemicals and toxic substances.

Monitoring occurs statewide and is conducted by staff of the Environmental Monitoring Unit, the Aquatic Toxicant Field Research Unit, and regional fishery biologists. Analytical and quality control work is conducted at the Hale Creek Field Station by staff from the Analytical Services and Quality Assurance Units. Results from fish tissue analyses are used by the NYS Department of Health to issue the annual health advisories for consuming sportfish and game. The advisory explains how to minimize your health risks from eating sportfish and game that are likely to contain elevated levels of chemical contaminants. The Ecotoxicology and Standards Unit develops water quality and other standards for protection of fish and wildlife and conducts risk assessments for pesticides proposed for registration in New York State. For further information on environmental monitoring in fish and wildlife, contact Wayne Richter at 518-402-8974.