Saturday, 7 May 2011

Caribbean sponges - Tobago

Half of a barrel sponge

  Tobago has an interesting underwater world. Surprisingly sponges attracted my attention. They have a weird and an ambiguous classification (the one that we were given at the expedition) but they are colourful and more abundant than anything else. Guess mostly because corals are in a terrible condition.

Barrel sponge
Barrel sponge--the most common sponge around the island

Barrel sponge Inside a barrel sponge

If you are looking for interesting things like invertebrates or even small colourful fish you should definitely look inside barrel sponges. Barrel sponges can be tiny or even the size of a car

Brown tube sponge
There are lots of species of tube sponges. One above is just one of them

Encrusting sponge Branching vase sponge

Orange lumpy encrusting sponge

Branching sponge

Encrusting sponge

lumpy encrusting sponge sponge

Most of them we would classify as encrusting sponges. At least for survey purposes. This is just some representatives of sponges. I believe I didn't take pictures of even a tenth part of species around the island.

Yellow calcareous sponge Sponge

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