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The World Porifera Database

The WPD, the World Database of all Recent sponges ever described, is part of the World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS), a global initiative to arrive at a register of all marine organisms. The WPD is complementary to the Systema Porifera (editors Hooper & Van Soest, 2002), the two volume comprehensive classification of all sponge taxa above the species level. It incorporates recent and future amendments of the sponge classification, including the recently proposed revision of Morrow & Cárdenas (2015).


Porifera news


Taxonomic revision of Suberitidae from California

Added on: 2024-05-03 17:11:51 by Boury-Esnault, Nicole
Turner, T.L.; Rouse, G.W.; Weigel, B.L.; Janusson, C.; Lemay, M.A.; Thacker, R.W. (2024). Taxonomy and phylogeny of the family Suberitidae (Porifera: Demospongiae) in California. Zootaxa. 5447(1): 1-28. ...

Biemna begonae, a new species from South European Atlantic Shelf

Added on: 2024-04-30 10:16:02 by Ríos, Pilar
Cristobo, J.; Almón, B.; Pérez, J.; Ríos, P. (2024). A new species of the genus Biemna Gray, 1867 (Porifera: Biemnidae) from shallow waters of the Northwestern Iberian coasts. Zootaxa. 5446(1): 121-132., available online at ...

Invasive freshwater sponge in Europa

Added on: 2024-04-28 16:14:54 by Boury-Esnault, Nicole
Carballo, J.L.; Cruz-Barraza, J.A.; Domínguez-Monge, C.; Cano, C.; López-González, P.J. (2024). First report of the invasive freshwater sponge Heterorotula multidentata (Weltner, 1895) in Europa: a latent threat for aquatic ecosystems?. Limnology. ...

Haplosclerida from Northern Arabian Sea

Added on: 2024-04-28 13:40:29 by Boury-Esnault, Nicole
Shafique, S.; Burhan, Z.; Jabeen, H.; Rasheed, M.; Ali, A.; Siddiqui, P.J.A. (2023). Re-description of two marine sponge species (Demospongiae: Haplosclerida) from the coast of Karachi, Pakistan, Northern Arabian Sea. Indian Journal of Geo-Marine Sciences. 52(07): 347-353. ...

First record of Axinella venusta in the western Mediterranean

Added on: 2024-04-23 10:30:35 by Cárdenas, Paco
Díaz, J.A.; Ordines, F.; Massutí, E. (2024) First record of the recently described Axinella venusta Idan, Shefer, Feldstein & Ilan, 2021 (Demospongiae: Axinellidae) in the western Mediterranean. Cahiers de Biologie Marine, (65) 87 - 91. ...

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The aim for the WPD is to be a catalogue of sponge species in a continuously updated, fully hierarchical system to promote stability of sponge names, to serve the community of users of sponge names, and to act as a tool for higher taxon revisions and regional monographs. A further aim is to be the world’s comprehensive database for sponge type specimens and other important vouchered specimens. Additional information we are making available are (overview) distributions of all species and unaccepted name combinations occurring in the literature.

In order to have adequate expert knowledge we have formed an editorial committee consisting of:

and the following specialist colleagues:

Editors are responsible for entries, decision on validity of names. Corrections and omissions may be addressed to the relevant editor or the general editor.

Currently (2024), there are 9,650 valid species (marine + non-marine) in the database (among almost 20,000 taxon names). Acceptance is an editorial decision, but we acknowledge such decisions need to be re-examined frequently in the light of new information. If you disagree with senior synonymy decisions or genus assignments, please let us have your - argumented - corrected assignment. More info.

Who is who in sponge science

This global address list reflects information collated through annual surveys posted on mailing lists (PoriferaList, CoraList and Skolithos) and by contacting some people directly. The information was collected and made available by Christine Schönberg.

Sponge conference materials

This is a record of abstracts, proceedings and other materials from sponge meetings and symposia.


Usage of data from the World Porifera Database in scientific publications should be acknowledged by citing as follows:

  • de Voogd, N.J.; Alvarez, B.; Boury-Esnault, N.; Cárdenas, P.; Díaz, M.-C.; Dohrmann, M.; Downey, R.; Goodwin, C.; Hajdu, E.; Hooper, J.N.A.; Kelly, M.; Klautau, M.; Lim, S.C.; Manconi, R.; Morrow, C.; Pinheiro, U.; Pisera, A.B.; Ríos, P.; Rützler, K.; Schönberg, C.; Turner, T.; Vacelet, J.; van Soest, R.W.M.; Xavier, J. (2024). World Porifera Database. Accessed at on 2024-05-21. doi:10.14284/359
If the data from the World Porifera Database constitute a substantial proportion of the records used in analyses, the chief editor(s) of the database should be contacted. There may be additional data which may prove valuable to such analyses.

Individual pages are individually authored and dated. These can be cited separately: the proper citation is provided at the bottom of each page.

Website and databases developed and hosted by VLIZ · Page generated 2024-05-21 · contact: Nicole de Voogd