Mean ∑PCBs concentrations in male and female cetaceans (four species; adults only).
The blue bars are adult males and the grey bars are adult females. The lower line is the equivalent ∑PCBs concentrations threshold (9.0 mg/kg lipid) for onset of physiological effects in experimental marine mammal studies6. The upper line is the equivalent ∑PCBs concentrations threshold (41.0 mg/kg lipid) for the highest PCB toxicity threshold published for marine mammals based on marked reproductive impairment in ringed seals in the Baltic Sea6. Mean ∑PCBs concentrations (mg/kg lipid) in adult male (n = 146) and female (n = 134) UK-stranded harbour porpoises in 1990–2012. Mean blubber ∑PCBs (mg/kg lipid) concentrations (1990–2012) shown for stranded/biopsied adult male (n = 20) and female (n = 14) bottlenose dolphins from UK and Ireland and the Atlantic coast of Spain and Portugal (NE Atlantic). Mean blubber ∑PCBs (mg/kg lipid) concentrations shown for adult male (n = 8) and female (n = 14) striped dolphins from the western Mediterranean Sea (1991–2009). Finally, mean blubber ∑PCBs (mg/kg lipid) concentrations shown for adult male (n = 3) and female (n = 18) killer whales from the NE Atlantic (1994–2012). Error bars = 1SEM.