- Orange agelas (Agelas oroides)
Commonly found on the roofs of caves or overhanging areas. Grows in massive forms with large oscula (outlet holes through which water is expelled).
- Black sponge (Ircinia spinosa)
Quite a common sponge and easy to spot as it is often out in the open, encrusting rocky reefs. Can grow quite large. This example is well over 30 cm in length.
- Brush sponge (Ciocalypta penicillus)
The base of the sponge is hidden beneath the sand and sediment with only these conical projections visible.
- Orange-red encrusting sponge (Crambe crambe)
As the name suggests, a bright red to orange coloured encrusting sponge. It prefers sunlit areas and sometimes encrusts the shells of molluscs, hence one of the other common names for this sponge - the Oyster sponge.
- Stinker sponge (Ircinia variabilis)?
- Kidney sponge (Chondrosia reniformis)
Commonly seen in the caves around Rhodes. Is always quite fleshy and kidney shaped, though varies in colour (see next photo for white example).
- Kidney sponge (Chondrosia reniformis) reproduction
Here you can see how the sponge reproduces asexually: globules of the sponge dangle from the parent sponge till finally reaching another surface where the sponge will continue to grow, in essence cloning itself.
- Mycale (carmia) macilenta?
Not sure if identification is correct but it seems to be the best fit. This is a type of encrusting sponge.
- Hyper calcified sponge (Petrobiona massiliana)
The small white blobs next to the markers are the sponges. This is a very rare "living fossil". It was first found in dark caves near Marseille and it was determined to be the only living species of a group of sponges previously known only as fossils. It is now being researched as its skeleton holds a climate record that might be of use in understanding changes in the marine environment and possibly climate change.