Red Tide Bioluminescence – Southern California

Chasen C., Journalist/Photographer

As of a couple weeks ago, Southern California experienced its yearly red tide algal bloom. According to Wikipedia, red tide is the upwelling of nutrients from the sea floor, often following massive storms, provides for the algae and triggers bloom events. Our oceans turned quite red/brown, a result of a major increase in toxic algae known as dinoflagellates. This explosion in dinoflagellates discolors the water, also making an effect during nighttime. Bioluminescence, the production and emission of light by a living organism. This creates a light blue color as currents move over the algae. Surfers were found surfing these blue waves at nighttime, as the light provided some source of visibility. The following images show the occurrence:


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