Many people think I am a plant, but I am really just a very simple animal. I don't have a face or hands or guts or lots of parts that other animals have. Sponges like me live in large groups on rocks and dead coral. Not many things can eat me because I have toxic chemicals in my body. After 700 million years we've perfected the ability to sit in one place, eat without having to move or run from predators...you could call us the oldest couch potatoes on the planet! We just have to watch out for those Hawksbill turtles...if they spot one of us, we're done for!
I am one of the oldest animal life forms on Earth! In fact, I am so old that I make the dinosaurs look young! Some scientists think that sponges were around over 700 million years ago! But that's not the only cool thing about me. Check this out: many scientists are studying the chemicals in our spongy bodies. Some of these chemicals have been found to help treat cancer and other diseases! Pretty cool, huh?
I eat tiny food particles in the water. We use our tiny tails to create water currents. We make water flow in and out of our cells and we trap any particles from the water and eat them. That's why we are called filter feeders. Because I will eat any kind of food particle, animal or plant, I am an omnivore.
Reefs are in danger, and since that is where I live, I am in danger, too!