Sponge Guide

UNCW National Science Foundation Valdosta State University Universidad Nacional de Colombia

Observed Characteristics:


  • blue
  • gray
  • pink-lilac


  • branching
  • encrusting


  • tough

Sample Locations:

  • Bahamas

Niphates amorpha

Notes: Originally called Niphates digitalis fo. amorpha. Zea (1987) and other authors synonymized it to Niphates erecta Duchassaing & Michelotti, 1864, on the grounds of several individuals having both broad encrusting and erect parts, and in not finding skeletal differences between fully encrusting and branching individuals from the same locality. However, in the Bahamas N. amorpha individuals always have pointed oxea spicules, while N. erecta (repent and erect branches) have their oxeas rather blunt, with mammiform tips, almost like strongyles. Thus, it appears that at least for the Bahamas, N. amorpha is a good species. It remains to be determined if it exists elsewhere and if it maintains skeletal differences with N. erecta. In the World Porifera Database it has been synonymized to Gelliodes sosuae Pulitzer-Finally, 1986, but this remains to be confirmed, as the latter has its spiculation similar to Niphates recondita (Wiedenmayer, 1977), also pictured here.

Author Reference: Wiedenmayer, 1977


Link: World Porifera Database