Giant Barrel Sponges, Xestospongia muta

by | Dec 31, 2015 | Events, Fish, Reef, Science | 0 comments

Good morning from rainy overcast Curacao! Check out these monster sized Giant Barrel Sponges, Xestospongia muta that we found at 70 feet on our drift dive from the Sea Aquarium house reef to the Substation house reef. The barrel sponge at the top is the largest at around six feet tall with a good two and half foot wide opening; these are truly exceptional specimens! As we passed we watched a single Foureye Butterflyfish swim in and out of the bottom sponge pecking at small amounts of algae from around the inside of the sponge without a care in the world.  The giant barrel sponge (Xestospongia muta) is the largest species of sponge found growing on Caribbean coral reefs. It is common at depths greater than 10 meters (33 ft) down to 120 meters (390 ft) and can reach a diameter of 1.8 meters (6 feet).  MORE


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