HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Waters off Washington state only second place in world where glass sponge reefs found

Thirty miles west of Grays Harbor, University of Washington scientists have discovered large colonies of glass sponges thriving on the seafloor. The species of glass sponges capable of building reefs were thought extinct for 100 million years until they were found in recent years in the protected waters of Canada's Georgia and Hecata straits, the only place in the world they've been observed until now.

The discovery in Washington waters extends the range of reef-building glass sponges into open ocean.

The sponge reefs could be important to the ecosystems on the Washington coast because they create a thriving oasis dense with sea life on seafloor that is otherwise sparely populated for miles, says Paul Johnson, UW professor of oceanography and chief scientist on the UW's ship Thomas G. Thompson, June 10-16, when the Washington glass sponge reefs were discovered. The glass sponge reefs were alive with zooplankton, sardines, crabs, prawns and rockfish.

"It's like looking at an overcrowded aquarium in an expensive Japanese restaurant," he says.

The Washington sponge reefs are each hundreds of feet in length and width. It's possible that the state has reefs comparable to the Canadian reefs that are miles in length, Johnson says.

The glass sponge reefs on the continental shelf west of Grays Harbor appear to be thriving on specialized bacteria that consume methane gas that the UW scientists were surprised to discover flowing out of the seafloor in copious amounts. Methane has not been detected by Canadian scientists near their glass sponge reefs, thus the Washington margin reefs could represent a new type of ecosystem on the shelf, one where the abundant biology is fueled by methane gas derived from ancient carbon in the sediments, Johnson says.

The glass sponges so-called because their skeletons are made of silica (the same material as beach sand) come in un-sponge-like shapes similar to cups and funnels. They range in
'"/>

Contact: Sandra Hines
shines@u.washington.edu
206-543-2580
University of Washington
30-Jul-2007


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. University of Washington researchers play leading role in major study of human genome function
2. Washington University in St. Louis to invest $55 million for renewable energy research
3. Ocean observing contracts awarded to UC San Diego and University of Washington
4. Event will dig and display Washington DCs soil -- Sunnyside
5. Presidents from 13 universities worldwide to gather at Washington University in St. Louis
6. University of Washington-led team discovers a gene that causes familial pancreatic cancer
7. Experimental Biology 2007 meets in Washington, D.C., April 28-May 2
8. Stem Cell Conference in Washington
9. University of Washington researchers discover novel genomic disorders
10. AIBS to hold annual meeting May 24-25 in Washington, DC
11. Washington Universitys Sarah Elgin is re-funded by Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:5/21/2019)... ... May 20, 2019 , ... Pennsylvania College of Health ... 96.15% pass rate for first-time test takers of the National Council Licensure Examination ... 76.43% by nearly 20 points. , “This first-time pass rate is commendable ...
(Date:5/15/2019)... ... May 15, 2019 , ... ... of histology wherein tissues are cut into ultra-thin two-dimensional slices, placed on glass ... the context of the brain is that the brain is a highly heterogenous ...
(Date:5/9/2019)... ANN ARBOR, Mich. (PRWEB) , ... May 09, ... ... 2019 the introduction of its first suite of products based on its microbubble ... within the tube—they simply float to the surface. Feedback from customers who participated ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/21/2019)... ... May 21, 2019 , ... DuPont Nutrition & Biosciences ... inaugural Africa Brewing Conference dedicated to sharing brewing knowledge, strengthening relationships and discussing ... is supported through a partnership with “Ethiopia Invest”, will run through May 23, ...
(Date:5/15/2019)... (PRWEB) , ... May 16, 2019 , ... ... water mixtures. As a result, food and beverage products rely on these ingredients ... demand more natural sounding label declarations. This paradigm shift triggers food formulators to ...
(Date:5/14/2019)... ... ... Gateway Genomics , a leading developer of prenatal and pediatric genetic ... feet. , “This past year has seen exponential growth for the sales of ... “The SneakPeek At-Home test, which is mailed directly to our customers who self-collect a ...
(Date:5/7/2019)... British Columbia (PRWEB) , ... May 06, 2019 ... ... be a go-to resource for the growing number of repositories being asked to ... We are grateful to the team of contributors who are world leaders, who ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: