Magical Beach Lights

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Posted by ZihuaRob from ( on martes, abril 08, 2003 at 13:58:57 :

In Reply to: Re: Trip Report, posted by Karen in Eugene from ( on martes, abril 08, 2003 at 01:05:16 :

The phosphorescent plankton found along our coastline truly create a magical wonder of nature at night along our beaches. Unfortunately many beaches around are bay are illuminated with bright artificial lighting from various sources causing this marvelous spectacle to be easily missed in the resulting light pollution (as well as deterring many of the sea turtles who once laid their eggs on our beaches in abundance).

On the darkest nights at unlit beaches you will often notice the ability to still see rather well once your eyes adjust. Part of this is starshine (on clear nights) but another part of this is due to the fact that the waves "glow" from the reaction of the plankton to the turbulence. When their concentrations are high this has an awesome effect. Though I don't recommend swimming in the ocean at night (being feeding time for many), if you do you'll notice how the water glows whenever you move through it and you can see yourself outlined in a greenish light. Another way to see it is simply by dragging your foot through the wet sand just above the waterline where a wave has just washed out. It will sparkle and glow!

*CAUTION* Engaging in this activity has been known to cause giddiness and a feeling of euphoria accompanied by intense romantic impulses. Practice at your own risk! ;~)

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