Story: Marine animals without backbones

Stalk of a glass sponge (1st of 2)

Stalk of a glass sponge

About 70 types of glass sponge have been found growing on the deep-sea floor around New Zealand, at depths between 450 and 4,000 metres. This is the stalk of the tulip-shaped glass sponge, Hyalonema. It is composed of long strands of glass fibres, which have fibre-optic properties, used to anchor the sponge to the sea floor.

Using this item
Photograph by Peter Batson

This item has been provided for private study purposes (such as school projects, family and local history research) and any published reproduction (print or electronic) may infringe copyright law. It is the responsibility of the user of any material to obtain clearance from the copyright holder.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Dennis Gordon and Maggy Wassilieff, 'Marine animals without backbones - Sponges and jellies', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 23 February 2024)

Story by Dennis Gordon and Maggy Wassilieff, published 12 Jun 2006