[China] People in Dalian, China were treated to a light show in the sea courtesy of an algal bloom yesterday.
The phenomenon commonly known as Sea Sparkle has appeared on the shores of Dalian City in north east China’s Liaoning province.
However pretty it seems, the algae can wreak havoc on the local marine life, the People’s Daily Online reports.
The images were taken on May 4 after a storm hit a small beach in the coastal town of Dalian.
Tourists were able to see the waves glow blue like miniature neon lights in the evenings.
According to Chinese media, this isn’t the first time the shores near the city have glowed the familiar blue colour.
Every time the sparkle comes back to the shore in Dalian, thousands of sightseers flock to the area to get the best photos and see it first hand.
Cities such as Shenzhen and Qingdao have also reported cases of Sea Sparkle.
The abnormally warm sea temperatures in recent times are thought to be a major contributing factor in the increased algae population.
The bright bioluminescence effect is created when the water in which the micro organisms are inhabiting is disturbed, and can unfortunately be devastating to marine life and local fisheries if left to spread out of control.
Scientists believe Noctiluca’s role as both prey and predator can eventually magnify the accumulation of algae toxins in the food chain.
Mystery of the stunning glow: How is the “sea sparkle” effect created in the waves?
- Noctiluca scintillans is a free-living, non, marine-dwelling species of that exhibits luminescence when it is disturbed in its large population.
- Each micro algae is made up of a wide flagellum, an extension of the cell wall called a tooth, and a striated tentacle involved in ingestion.
- The Noctiluca become more abundant when the chemicals nitrogen and phosphorous from farm run-off increase and pour into the oceans.
- Unlike similar organisms in its genus, Noctiluca doesn’t directly produce chemicals that can attack the nervous system or parts of the body.
- When the blooms die, they sink to the bottom of the sea when they decompose, consuming huge amounts of oxygen – killing other marine life.
Source: Smithsonian Department of Botany
Photo: Stunning: The phenomenon commonly known as Sea Sparkle has appeared on the shores of Dalian City in north east China
View original article at: Ocean blue: Spectacular pictures show seawater glowing a majestic shade due to natural phenomenon