PORT PHILLIP BAY


Sponge 

Raspailia sp. MoV 6668

View scientific description and taxonomy

Scientific Details

These sponges exhibit growth forms ranging from branching (arborescent), massive, to thickly encrusting-lobate.

Brief species characters:
Growth form: encrusting, lobate.
Mineral skeleton: siliceous.
Megescleres: monaxone.
Surface texture: irregular, lumpy.

Family level characters:
This family exhibits a wide range of growth forms and is typically represented by sponges with a pronounced velvety or hispid surface, produced by the tips of spicules, usually styles or oxeas, protruding through the sponge surface. These large protruding spicules, sometimes visible by eye, are typically surrounded by bouquets of smaller spicules at their base - a feature termed raspailiid. The fibre skeleton is usually reticulate and may be compressed in the peripheral region.

Order level characters:
This order contains the highest diversity of sponge species in the phylum, spread amongst 25 families. Member species have been recorded from all marine habitats. Poecilosclerid sponges are characterised by the presence of both organic (fibre) and inorganic (spicular) skeletal components, both usually well developed. Different spicule and skeletal elements are often localised to particular regions of the sponge. A diverse range of spicule types is displayed throughout this order including the c-shaped chelae microscleres that are peculiar to this order. Examples from 11 of the 25 families are included here.

Source: Goudie, L., Norman, M. N. and Finn, J. K. (in press) Sponges, Museum Victoria.

Taxonomy

Phylum:
Porifera
Class:
Demospongiae
Order:
Poecilosclerida
Family:
Raspailiidae
Genus:
Raspailia

General Description

A brown to purple sponge species with encrusting to lobate form. Size of about 50 cm.

Biology

This cosmopolitan genus contains species found from the tropics to Antarctic waters, and over a wide depth range.

Habitat

Reef and jetty areas, to depth of 5 m.

Sponge gardens

Reefs

Distribution guide

Port Phillip in Victoria.

Species Group

Sponges Demosponges

Depth

Shallow (1-30 m)

Water Column

On or near sea floor

Max Size

50 cm

Diet

Plankton or particles

Commercial Species

No

Global Dispersal

Recorded in Australia

Species Code

sp. MoV 6668

Identify

Conservation Status

  • DSE Advisory List : Not listed
  • EPBC Act 1999 : Not listed
  • IUCN Red List : Not listed

Author

article author Goudie, L.

Lisa Goudie is a consultant with expertise in sponge taxonomy.

citation

Cite this page as:
Goudie, L., 2011, Sponge, Raspailia , in Taxonomic Toolkit for marine life of Port Phillip Bay, Museum Victoria, accessed 23 Aug 2017, http://portphillipmarinelife.net.au:8098/species/7686

Text: creative commons cc by licence