In March 2011, during a routine survey of Singapore’s coast, the divers found a sponge they could not identify. It wasn’t until sponge expert, Lim Swee Cheng, authenticated the discovery. Even writing on his Facebook page, “My heart skipped a beat when I saw it in Singapore waters this year.”
For the first time since their discovery, rather than harvesting Neptune’s Cup sponge, scientists will study them to learn how to conserve and hopefully rejuvenate the species. Already positive insight has been learned. Neptune’s Cup sponges were thought to be slow growing, but the sponges grew several centimeters between April-August.