Sponges boom thanks to Antarctic ice shelf bust

Sponges boom thanks to Antarctic ice shelf bust

Previously thought to grow at a slow pace, the sea creatures exploded in number

By Jessica Shugart, 14:45 PM August 23, 2013

When a catastrophic ice shelf collapse in Antarctica opened up prime ocean real estate, enterprising delicate creatures called glass sponges showed up with unprecedented speed to stake their claim. The finding suggests that even in frigid places, sea life may adapt rapidly to climate change.

Cloaked in darkness and cut off from the photosynthetic power of the sun, the waters beneath Antarctic ice shelves host sparse signs of life. But when a giant shelf collapses — as Larsen A and B did in 199...

Source URL: https://www.sciencenews.org/article/sponges-boom-thanks-antarctic-ice-shelf-bust?mode=magazine&context=4560