McMurray SE, Pawlik JR, Finelli CM. Ecology 91 , 560 – 570 ( 2010 ). Populations of the giant barrel sponge (Xestospongia muta), a common Caribbean species that can live for centuries (McMurray et al. This group of sponges are known to reach massive sizes and ages of 2000 years or more in warm Caribbean seas (Van Soest, 2012). Symbiotic ties, bioactive compounds, and mysterious distributions of bacteria characterize these ancient invertebrates. , Demographics of increasing populations of the giant barrel sponge Xestospongia muta in the Florida Keys. The giant barrel sponge, Xestospongia muta, is prominent in many locations; on reefs off Key Largo, Florida, populations increased 46% over a six-year period beginning 2000. The most common variably defended sponges were the giant barrel sponge Xestospongia muta and the green branched sponge Iotrochota birotulata. No caption available Advertisement Selective feeding by the giant barrel sponge enhances foraging efficiency. Tissues of X. muta contain cyanobacterial symbionts of the Synechococcus group. I knew they were sponges, but I hadn’t expected anything that large or abundant. 2008) and grow to more than a meter in height and diameter (figure 1), have increased by 122% over the period 2000–2012 on Conch Reef in … The giant barrel sponge Xestospongia muta is one of the largest and most important components of Caribbean coral reef communities. the giant barrel sponge Xestospongia muta and the green branched sponge Iotrochota birotulata. The giant barrel sponge, Xestospongia muta (Demo-spongiae: Haplosclerida) is a large and common member of Caribbean coral reef communities. 2010. Correspondence Department of Molecular, Cellular and Biomedical Sciences, University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH 03824. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 473: 73-80. Symbiotic prokaryotic communities from different populations of the giant barrel sponge, Xestospongia muta. Populations of this spe-cies occupy greater than 9% of the available reef substrate in some regions (Zea 1993). Green cactus algae. The giant barrel sponge is considered to be on the second trophic level, meaning that it is a primary consumer since it consumes photosynthetic cyanobacteria, which are primary producers (McMurray et al., 2008). They are key species in their respective environments and are hosts to diverse assemblages of bacteria. Of the 239 sponges tagged in 2000, 66% survived to 2012. Epinephelus morio. Jessica K. Jarett. However, little is known about its population structure and gene flow. Giant Barrel Sponges filter a tremendous amount of water throughout their lifespan (some living up to 2000 years) which increases water clarity, controls algae, and affects coral populations. Some sponges … Redwoods of the reef: new insights on the giant barrel sponge of the Caribbean By Joseph R. Pawlik, Ph.D., Professor . populations of the giant barrel sponge, Xestospongia muta Cara L. Fiore, Jessica K. Jarett & Michael P. Lesser Department of Molecular Cellular and Biomedical Sciences, University of New Hampshire, Durham, New Hampshire 03824 Keywords Bacteria, sponge, symbiosis. Sponges take in water from the outside, which is funneled through small channels by rotating cilia.This is how they get their food. Sponges are a prominent component of coral reef ecosystems. Search for more papers by this author. Porites astreoides. Xestospongia muta increases habitat complexity and stability, and filters large volumes of water, enhancing water quality and facilitating nutrient cycling. 2014. Giant barrel sponges may be affected by sponge orange band (SOB) disease; this is a disease specific to sponges, beginning with lesions on the pinacoderm and leading to bleaching that can be fatal within six weeks after infection. Although (1816) separated the sponges in a group Spongiaria allied to Protozoa. Giant barrel sponges, such as Xestospongia muta, are referred to by some as "Redwoods of the Reef." Population dynamics of giant barrel sponges on Florida coral reefs. MtDNA diversity of the Indonesian giant barrel sponge Xestospongia testudinaria (Porifera: Haplosclerida) – implications from partial cytochrome oxidase 1 sequences - Volume 96 Special Issue - Edwin Setiawan, Nicole J. de Voogd, Thomas Swierts, John N.A. Giant barrel sponges in the genus Xestospongia may be among the largest benthic invertebrates providing habitat and fulfilling ecosystem services on reefs where coral is declining. The giant barrel sponge Xestospongia muta a particularly important species; populations constitute a significant amount The giant barrel sponge Xestospongia muta is a dominant reef constituent in the Caribbean. We have monitored permanent plots on reefs off Key Largo, Florida, USA, to study the demography of a particularly important species, the giant barrel sponge, Xestospongia muta. Limnology and Oceanography 61 (4): 1271-1286. Stegastes partitus. From 2000-2012, the density of the giant barrel sponge population increased by 44% on Pickles Reef, while on Conch Reef it more than doubled (fig 2)! We examined the carbon flux mediated by the giant barrel sponge, Xestospongia testudinaria, on reefs in the Red Sea across an inshore–offshore gradient that had previously been proposed to affect sponge nutrition in other parts of the tropics. The giant barrel sponges Xestospongia muta and Xestospongia testudinaria are ubiquitous in tropical reefs of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, respectively. Giant barrel sponges, Xestospongia muta, are known as the “redwoods of the reef” as they are large (can be up to ~6 feet in height and ~3 feet across), long-lived (> 2,000 years old), and provide habitat for many reef species. POPULATION ECOLOGY. Xestospongia muta. On the reefs oV Key Largo, Populations of X. muta that have been monitored annually in plots on Conch and Pickles Reefs in the Florida Keys increased by as much as 122% between 2000 and 2012, raising questions about the processes structuring these growing populations. Ecological Archives E091-040-A1 Steven E. McMurray, Timothy P. Henkel, and Joseph R. Pawlik. Microsatellite markers for the closely related Pacific giant … doi: 10.1890/08-2060.1 pmid: … Red grouper . Halimeda. Seawater samples were collected from the incurrent and excurrent flow of 35 sponges. From 2000 to 2006, population densities of X. muta significantly increased at sites on Conch Reef by a mean of 46% (range = 16-108%) and on Pickles Reef by a mean of 33%. Description. Sponges with unknown chemical defense strategies comprised less than 1% of the total sponge assemblage. Department of Molecular Cellular and Biomedical Sciences, University of New Hampshire, Durham, New Hampshire, 03824 . Some degraded reefs are characterized by high levels of sedimentation and low coral cover in this area, but support large populations of the ecologically important giant barrel sponge Xestospongia spp. > Symbiotic ties, bioactive compounds, and mysterious distributions of bacteria characterize these ancient invertebrates ! Cara L. Fiore. spp. From 2000 to 2006, population densities of X. muta significantly increased at sites on Conch Reef by a mean of 46% (range = 16–108%) and on Pickles Reef by a mean of 33%. 2016. 2015, Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology. Like reef-building corals, some sponges have been reported to bleach and die. The water is … These sponges also serve as a habitat for many other species such as other invertebrates, benthic fish, bacteria, and cyanobacteria. Sponges are an especially abundant and diverse group on Caribbean coral reefs that perform key community functions, however little is known about sponge demography. A modest-sized giant barrel sponge can pump 15,000 litres per hour, giving a weekly volume roughly equal to that of an Olympic-sized swimming pool. Video recorded with liquid image co camera mask filmed at 1080p. Lettuce corals (Scleractinia; Agariciidae) Bicolor damselfish. The morphology and physiology of sponges were first adequately understood by who created in 1836 the name Porifera for the group by which it is now generally known, iuxle (1875) and Sollas (1884) proposed the complete separation of sponges from other Metazoa on the grounds of many peculiarities. The giant barrel sponge, though living as a solitary sponge as seen in Fig. Sponges with unknown chemical defense strategies comprised less than 1% of the total sponge assemblage. Mustard hill coral. Population dynamics of giant barrel sponges on Florida coral reefs. McMurray SE, Johnson ZI, Hunt DE, Pawlik JR, Finelli CM. Pterois volitans. Lionfish. I saw them on my first SCUBA dive off Grand Bahama Island in 1978: large, partially hollow cylinders on the slope of the coral reef; brown barrels, some as large as oil drums. Hooper, Gert Wörheide, Dirk Erpenbeck Xestospongia muta, the giant barrel sponge, is a key component of coral reef benthic communities in Southeast Florida and the Caribbean. assess the population genetic structure of sponges. The oldest giant barrel sponge found off the coast of Venezuela and estimated to be 2300 years old died from SOB in only a few weeks. Photograph: Joseph R. Pawlik. Contributions of transitions to the accelerated population decline of the giant barrel sponge, Xestospongia muta, from 2000-2003 to 2003-2006 on Conch Reef. Diver collected cores of the giant barrel sponge, Xestospongia muta, for a population genetic analysis. This means that the increase in giant sponge density was in part due to the sponges growing and expanding, but also in part due to new recruits.