The people are employed in fishing for coral and sponges, as well as for bream, mullet and other fish.
For sponge fishing no accurate statistics are available before 1896; in that year 75 tons of sponges were secured, but there has been considerable diminution since, only 31 tons being obtained in 1902.
It is quite possible that the characters of the nematocysts might afford data as useful to the systematist in this group as do the spicules of sponges, for instance.
" The Jews were unwilling sponges by means of which a large part of the subjects' wealth found its way into the royal exchequer " (Abrahams, Jewish Life in the Middle Ages, ch.
Still, Lake Baikal has a seal (Phoca vitulina, Phoca baikalensis of Dybowski) quite akin to the seals of Spitsbergen, marine sponges, polychaetes, a marine mollusc (ancilodoris), and some marine gammarids.