The bodies of water close to industrial, agricultural, and urban centers show high levels of HHCs in water, sediments, and biota. Even in Arctic and Antarctic residues of PBBs, chlorobornanes, PBDEs, PCN, PCBs, and DDT can be detected in water and biota.
Embryos and young animals are generally more sensitive to HHCs and other toxicants. Bioconcentration of these stable compounds can lead to high concentrations in organisms higher up in the food chain. Each level of organisms may be affected by chronic exposures to these halogens. However, the effects on lower organisms are not easily available and recorded. HHCs differ widely in their toxicities to aquatic food chain organisms as exemplified by water flea Daphnia magna (Table 7).
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