What makes glass sponge unique?
We know from the fossil record that the glass sponges are one of the oldest forms of animal life, dating back 580 million years. The existence of a glass sponge reef had disappeared from the fossil record 40 million years ago and was thought to be extinct.
What makes a glass sponge bioherm or reef unique is that when an older sponge dies off, its body forms the foundation for new glass sponges to grow on top of its own ancestors.
Why are the reefs important?
Each square meter of sponge reef filters about 250,000 litres of sea water every 24 hours
One of the most important rolls the reefs play are providing habitat for at least 100 other animals, including at risk species
Every 2.5 days the reefs absorb as much carbon as that is being absorbed by an entire hectare of temperate rainforest
How many reefs have been discovered?
17 glass sponge reefs have been discovered on top of sea mounts in Howe Sound in the depth ranges of 120 ft - 330 ft / 36 m - 100