Tube Sponge Kallypilidion fascigera
The elegant, tubular branches of this beautiful sponge are easily torn, and so it occurs only on deeper reef slopes, where wave action is minimal. It sometimes grows as a single tube, but it is more often seen as bunches of tubes joined at the base. The tips of the tubes are translucent and slightly rolled in. The color of this sponge is usually pinkish violet, although some specimens are pinkish blue. When this sponge releases sperm, it resembles smoking chimneys.
The taxonomic status of this species and its relationship to other species in the same family has not been fully determined, and it is listed under various names in different sources. Such uncertainties are not unusual in the study of sponges and mean that the exact distribution of this many other species is yet to be established.
- Class Demospongiae
- Height Up to 3 ft (1 m)
- Depth Below 33 ft (10 m)
- Habitat Coral reefs
- Distribution Tropical reef waters of western Pacific; likely to be more widespread than shown