Tube Sponge - Haliclona Species
This sponge, like all sponges, is a filter feeding animal. Sponges are the most primitive multicellular animals. In the porous walls of the sponge are cells which have hairs which whip back and forth actively moving water through the wall into the central cavity. As water passes through so do small plankton who get captured. Sponges don’t have a stomach or gut, but have specialized cells and tissue where the food is digested. This sponge is often found near groups of mussels, because mussels regularly release eggs and sperm, a regular source of concentrated food for a well positioned sponge.
Click image to magnify