A survey carried out by the Wildlife Trust has discovered an unknown purple sponge off the coast of Norfolk near Gorleston.
The survey, was intended to look at seaweed at coastal points around the country including parts of Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex yet the research dives found a lot more than expected.
Experts found over 131 types of seaweed in our waters, yet also found a mysterious purple sponge, not native to British shores and believed to be rare.
Joan Edwards, head of living seas for the wildlife trusts, told the BBC: “This survey has thrown up some important finds.
“Although the main objective was to survey seaweed, the team took advantage of being in a relatively unexplored environment to survey other species, resulting in the sponge discovery off Norfolk.
“The samples and results are still awaiting full analysis. We have no doubt that once this is done they’ll form a crucial part of our knowledge base around what’s living in the North Sea off the east coast of England.”
The discovery is great news for the Norfolk coast and places like Gorleston, who’s thousands of visitors a year come to enjoy the East Coast. Finds like this will help to maintain and protect important parts of our coastline in the future, great news for places like Gorleston.
It might even be worth heading down to Gorleston beach to find yourself a sponge, maybe an undiscovered multicoloured one!