Oxygen consumption by a coral reef sponge

Eran Hadas, Micha Ilan, Muki Shpigel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Oxygen consumption of the Red Sea coral reef sponge Negombata magnifica was measured using both incubation and steady-state methods. The latter method was found to be the more reliable because sponge activity remained stable over time. Oxygen consumption rate was measured during three levels of sponge activity: full activity, reduced activity and basal activity (starved). It was found that the active oxygen consumption rate of N. magnifica averaged 37.3±4.6 nmol O2 min-1 g-1 wet mass, which is within the upper range reported for other tropical marine sponges. Fully active N. magnifica individuals consumed an average of 41.8±3.2 nmol O2 min-1 g-1 wet mass. The mean basal respiration rate was 20.2±1.2 nmol O2 min-1 g-1 wet mass, which is 51.6±2.5% of the active respiration rate. Therefore, the oxygen used for water pumping was calculated to be at most 10.6±1.8 nmol O 2 min-1 g-1 wet mass, which is 25.1±3.6% of the total respiration. Combined oxygen used for maintenance and water pumping activity was calculated to be 30.8 nmol O2 min-1 g-1 wet mass, which is approximately 74% of the sponge's total oxygen requirement. The remaining oxygen is directed to other physiological activities, mainly the energy requirement of growth. These findings suggest that only a relatively minor amount of energy is potentially available for growth, and thus might be a factor in controlling the growth rate of N. magnifica in oligotrophic coral reefs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2185-2190
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Experimental Biology
Issue number13
StatePublished - Jul 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Energy budget
  • Negombata magnifica
  • Oxygen consumption
  • Red sea
  • Sponges

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Insect Science
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Aquatic Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Physiology


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