Pachymatisma johnstonia (Bowerbank in Johnston, 1842)

Elephant’s hide sponge

Pachymatisma johnstonia

Ile de Groix, France, 28 meters, 2009, WBN

Pachymatisma johnstonia

Ile de Groix, France, 28 meters, 2008, WBN


Pachymatisma johnstonia is a massive sponge which may reach 40 cm in diameter and 10 cm in height. It has rounded margins and elongate lobes with a very smooth surface. Oscules are gathered in linear groups on the top of the lobes. Colour varies from greish white to dark purplish grey. It has a firm rubbery consistency.


Pachymatisma johnstonia is attached to rocks, from swallow waters to depths up to 300 metersin the English Channel, the Atlantic ocean from the North of the British Isles down to Spain and in the Mediterranean Sea.

Image satellite: © Esri, DigitalGlobe, GeoEye, Earthstar Geographics, CNES/Airbus DS, USDA, USGS, AeroGRID, IGN, and the GIS User Community.

Données de distribution : Pachymatisma johnstonia (Bowerbank in Johnston, 1842) in GBIF Secretariat (2019). GBIF Backbone Taxonomy. Checklist dataset accessed via on 2022-01-28.


Source : World Register of Marine Species

Biota (Superdomain)
Animalia (Kingdom)
Porifera (Phylum)
Demospongiae (Class)
Heteroscleromorpha (Subclass)
Tetractinellida (Order)
Astrophorina (Suborder)
Geodiidae (Family)
Erylinae (Subfamily)
Pachymatisma (Genus)
Pachymatisma johnstonia (Species)

Page glossary

Oscule : opening generally quite visible, through which sponges expel water they have filtered to extract food particles.


Text : Wilfried Bay-Nouailhat © 2006 - 2022.

Photos : © Wilfried Bay-Nouailhat. Published with his kind permission.
Websites and reference works : Consult bibliography

How to cite this page

Bay-Nouailhat W., april 2006, Description of Pachymatisma johnstonia, [On line], consulted on 2022 January 28.


Photographie de Wilfried Bay-Nouailhat

Wilfried Bay-Nouailhat

Diver - Naturalist
Underwater Photographer

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