Vacelet, J.; Vasseur, P. (1977). Sponge distribution in coral reefs and related areas in the vicinity of Tulear (Madagascar). Proceedings of the Third International Coral Reef Symposium. 1977, 113-117.
Vacelet, J.; Vasseur, P.
Sponge distribution in coral reefs and related areas in the vicinity of Tulear (Madagascar).
Proceedings of the Third International Coral Reef Symposium
During an analysis of the distribution of 280 species of sponges in the coral reefs of Tulear, several species groups were obvious.
1) A characteristic fauna of numerous large, erect sponges occurs on flat surfaces of the lower sloping platform of the outer slope between 20 and 55 m.
2) Some species grow in full light conditions on the rocky or sandy areas of the inner reef flat. These species are few in number, but often constitute conspicuous populations.
3) A large number of shade-loving species are distributed widely in cryptic habitats of the reef outer slope, the reef front, the outer and inner reef flat and the inner slope.
4) In the cryptic habitats of each of these zones, there are also more localized shade-loving species. The darker areas of the galleries in the reef front have a distinctive fauna of very hard sponges (Pharetronids, Lithistids and Sclerosponges) of special interest.
5) Some free-living species occur in sandy regions, where they are buried by the sediment.
Light and water movements are the principal factors influencing this sponge distribution.