The western stock of the Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus) in the northern Pacific Ocean has declined by approximately 80% over the past 30 years. This led to the listing of this sea lion population as an endangered species in 1997. Chemical pollution is a one of several contributing causes. In the present study, 145 individual PCBs were determined in tissues of male sea lions from Tatitlek (Prince William Sound) and St. Paul Island (Bering Sea), and placentae from the Aleutian Islands. PCBs 90/101, 118, and 153 were abundant in all the samples. The mean toxic equivalents (TEQ) were 2.6, 4.7 and 7.4pg/g lw in the kidney, liver, and blubber samples, respectively. The mean TEQ in placentae was 8pg/g lw. Total PCBs concentrations (2.67.9g/g lw) in livers of some males were within a range known to cause physiological effects. Further suggesting the possibility of adverse effects on this stock.
Environmental Pollution – Elsevier
Published: Jan 1, 2011
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