Catch-And-Release Only At Fairbanks-Area Bathing Beauty Pond

The following is courtesy of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game:

 (Fairbanks) – The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is restricting Bathing Beauty Pond to catch-and-release sport fishing only for all fish species, effective 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, October 7, 2020. All fish species caught in these lakes may not be retained and must be released immediately.

This past summer, Bathing Beauty Pond was tested for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). Surface water results ranged from 21–26 ppt (parts per trillion). These results are below the EPA and DEC lifetime health advisory (LHA) levels of 70 ppt, but within the range in which bioaccumulation in fish may exceed the LHA. For example, PFAS levels in Kimberly Lake in North Pole were 24 ppt; however, fish tested from the same lake had PFAS levels ranging from 47,000-68,000 ppt. No fish have been tested from Bathing Beauty Pond, but as a precautionary measure, this action is being taken because of potential bioaccumulation in fish that may occur with the levels of PFAS measured in the water from Bathing Beauty Pond.

Unfortunately, catch-and-release fishing does not allow the harvest or consumption of fish. However, there are dozens of lakes in the Fairbanks area that provide the opportunity to harvest fish. Anglers who would like to target fish for consumption can reference pages 41-42 of the department’s Northern Alaska Sport Fishing Regulation Summary for a listing of the stocked lakes in the Tanana River drainage or call the Fairbanks office of ADF&G at (907) 459-7207 for a list of lakes in the area.

For additional information, contact Heather Scannell, Tanana Area Management Biologist, (907) 459-7357. For information specific to ground and surface water contaminants, please contact the Department of Environmental Conservation or visit their website.