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13 Uses of Sponges in the Ocean

by Fitriani

There are marine life in the forms of sponges in the ocean. These are known as sea sponges. Moreover, there are different types of sea sponges in the ocean.

A sea sponge has a unique feature that makes it different than the rest of the marine creatures. It has a porous body, thus the name which is sponge.

Sea sponges have no nerves, circulatory or digestive system. They solely rely on the moving water that moves past their bodies. But are these sponges useful? They are indeed useful to the ocean ecosystem as well as to humans. Find out the 13 Uses of Sponges in the Ocean which you can read below.

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1. Responsible for Nutrient Cycles

Sea sponges are responsible for an important ocean cycle. This particular cycle is called as the nutrient cycle. The body of a sponge enables them to filter through small marine materials. As those materials are released through its body, they contribute to the nutrient cycle in the ocean. Moreover, this nutrient cycle is especially important in areas where there are plenty of coral reefs.

2. Tells the Health of Water

A sea sponge in the ocean can tell the health of the water. The health of the ocean water is an important aspect. It is responsible for the marine life and also the world’s overall climate. Sea sponge can tell us the health of the ocean water based on the amount of nitrogen is released through its body.

3. Regulate Harmful Component

A sea sponge can regulate harmful component. It has the ability to collect bacterias into its body. The bacterias can absorb ammonium in the ocean water. They also convert the harmful ammonium into nitrogen gas. So the sea sponge helps to minimise the nitrogen level for coral reefs and the whole ocean ecosystem.

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4. Monitor Ocean pH Level

A sea sponge can help in monitoring the pH level in the ocean. As a sea sponge grows within a certain years, there are marks on them. These marks are in the form of chemical residue. They are marked in the skeleton of the sea sponge. Furthermore, the skeleton can act like rings on a tree. It can tell how the pH level in the ocean has changed over time.

5. Study Ocean Periods

Other than monitoring the pH level in the ocean, a sea sponge is useful in studying ocean periods. In this case, the skeleton is crucial too. Scientists may study the skeleton, looking for chemical residue during the changing ocean periods. There must be some chemical changes when the ocean turns warm from cold or vice versa. Also, this can help in studying the climate in our world too.

6. Understand Ocean Cycles

This next use for the ocean sponge is for understanding the ocean cycles. Through its skeleton, researchers are able to study the pattern in ocean cycles. This is important because it can help in studies that are related to the ocean environment or the whole ecosystem.

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7. Filter Ocean Water

An ocean sponge can filter ocean water. The main function of its body is to absorb the ocean water surrounding it. During the absorption, it takes every sea component into its body. It releases the water back into the ocean once it finishes the filtering process.

8. Provide Shelter

Another use for ocean sponge is providing shelter. In the ocean ecosystem, a sea sponge can provide home or temporary shelter to the marine animals. This is especially important to those creatures that live among the coral reefs environment. Furthermore, the marine creatures that take shelter in the sea sponge are shrimps, crabs or algae.

9. Provide Diet

An ocean sponge plays a role in providing food in the ecosystem. It is able to give other marine creatures the diet that they need. For example, the water filtration that they do may release small food components for other marine creatures. On the other hand, there are also some marine lives that like to feed on sponges. These marine lives are mostly fish.

10. For Arts and Crafts

You can actually use an already dried ocean sponge for arts and crafts. You can use them to paint on a canvas. Furthermore, the texture will create interesting patterns for your painting.

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11. Bathing Tools and Cosmetics

An ocean sponge is very popular for bathing tools or cosmetics. People use it for bathing or exfoliating. The sponge has the perfect texture and components to carry out all those uses.

12. Produce Oxygen in Ocean

According to recent studies, an ocean sponge can produce oxygen in the ocean. In fact, it is highly responsible for giving oxygen in the ocean water since 600 million years ago. Ever since then, the oxygen it gives creates more complex creatures at sea. Thanks to the ocean sponges, we now have the ocean ecosystem that we have today.

13. Help in Studying Medicine

This last use for ocean sponge is in the medicine field. An ocean sponge has helped scientists and doctors develop new medicines for different kinds of serious disease. For example, the ocean sponge has helped in making the HIV drug in the 1980s. Moreover, it has also created drugs that can help in treating herpes and leukemia. The ocean sponge is also involved in the first drug that is based on a marine life has helped in treating cancer.

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So, there are a lot of uses to the sea sponges. They help in maintaining the nutrient in the ocean and helps feed other marine lives. But most importantly, they played a part in creating complex forms in the ocean. Without these sea sponges, we may never have the ocean and all the marine creatures that we have today.

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