Salmon Caught Near Seattle Loaded With Cocaine And Anti-Depressants

May 10, 2019

Credit: Cameron Spencer / Staff / Getty Images


According to a paper published in the international journal Environmental Pollution, salmon caught near Seattle, contained traces of over 81 different types of drugs, including many illegal narcotics, stimulants and other classes of drugs. Some of the drugs found in the tissue of these salmon included cocaine, antidepressants, OxyContin, nicotine, caffeine, Tylenol and Valium. Researchers believe that this accumulation of drugs in the salmon is a result of personal waste being thrown into the water.

This wasn't the first time that wild-caught salmon were found with drugs in them. The study's lead author Jim Meador said that the researchers were surprised to find such a high amount of them. “The concentrations in effluent (an outflowing of water) were higher than we expected. We analyzed samples for 150 compounds and we had 61 percent of them detected in effluent. So we know these are going into the estuaries,” he said.

He added that they didn't believe there was any threat to humans from this discovery, just that there should be some concern, saying “You have to wonder what it is doing to the fish”.