Sponges are the most primitive macroinvertebrates living on North American west-coast shores. Intertidal forms tend to be low and encrusting, and are often colourful; subtidal forms are usually more erect, but often more drably coloured.
NOTE from the Old English sponge or spunge, derived from the L. spongia, referring to the animal. There are three main classes of sponges in the Phylum Porifera. Representatives of each live on the west coast, but largest and most visually obvious are the demosponges, and these comprise about 95% of all sponges commonly seen in the intertidal and shallow subtidal regions. Glass sponges of Class Hexactinellida live mostly in deep water. They are included in the ODYSSEY because of interesting work being done on them in British Columbia and because of the presence of unique glass-sponge reefs in this same province.
ANIMATION of the snail's odyssey © Thomas Carefoot 2020
To navigate through the ODYSSEY:
- Select a TOPIC from the menu at the top of the screen
- OR: play the animation to the left
- OR: follow the snail's ODYSSEY by CLICKING on any X-marked invertebrate on the map above