Carnivorous Sponges: The Venus Flytraps Of The Sea

Carnivorous Sponges: The Venus Flytraps Of The Sea

Carnivorous sponges typically live in the deep sea. Unlike other sponges, they aren't filter-feeders, and instead feed on the unfortunate crustaceans that become caught on their velcro-like hooks. The sponges don't have a stomach or digestive system, so they slowly eat their prey at the cellular level: individual cells travel to, cover, and digest their catches. There are more than 100 species of carnivorous sponge known to science.

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Key Facts In This Video

  • 1

    Sponges typically feed on bacteria and single-celled organisms that they sift out of water currents. (0:26)

  • 2

    The individual cells of carnivorous sponges engulf and digest caught prey. (1:03)

  • 3

    Carnivorous sponges have probably been around for about 200 million years. (3:15)

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Deep Sea

Aquatic Life

Science

Venus

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