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Fire Sponge Tedania ignis


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Fire Sponge
credit: NOAA

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Category: Sponges view all from this category

Description Spreads between 4"-12" (10-30 cm) to a thickness of 3/8" (1 cm). Thin, transparent skin produces cone shaped projections. Red, orange, or (less commonly) yellow. Soft and fragile tissue encrusts large surfaces and grows 12" (30 cm) in height. Produces a burning sensation when touched.

Warning Highly toxic. This sponge causes severe blistering and pain if touched with bare hands. Since this and the Do-not-touch-me Sponge, another stinger, are both red, it is wise to avoid touching any red sponge in subtropical waters.

Habitat Rocks, Coral reefs.

Range Florida.

Discussion Fire Sponge emits toxins on contact that result in painful rash and swelling.