Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) were determined in fish collected from the Gila River, Arizona, a tributary of the Colorado River in the lower part of the Colorado River Basin. Fish samples were collected at sites on the Gila River downstream from Hayden, Phoenix, and Arlington, Arizona in late summer 2003. The Gila River is ephemeral upstream of the Phoenix urban area due to dams and irrigation projects and has limited perennial flow downstream of Phoenix due to wastewater and irrigation return flows. Fifty PBDE congeners were analyzed by high resolution gas chromatography/high resolution mass spectrometry using labeled surrogate standards in composite samples of male and female common carp (Cyrpinus carpio), largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) and channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus). The predominant PBDE congeners detected and quantified were 47, 100, 153, 49, 28, and 17. Concentrations of total PBDEs in these fish ranged from 1.4 to 12700 ng g-1 wet weight, which are some of the highest concentrations reported in fish from the United States. Differences in metabolism of several PBDE congeners by carp is clear at the Phoenix site; congeners with at least one ring of 2,4,5-substitution are preferentially metabolized as are congeners with 2,3,4-substitution.