Bioluminescence has been an annual occurrence along the west coast since 2016.
Talking about "Neeli Machli" (blue tide)
The natural phenomenon is characterized by the emission of light produced by phytoplanktons (microscopic marine plants), commonly known as dinoflagellates. The light is produced through a series of chemical reactions due to luciferase (oxidative enzymes) protein, according to E Vivekanandan, consultant and scientist, Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute.
The occurrence was spotted at 11:45 PM on Tuesday, at Juhu Koliwada by a marine researcher and locals described the blue hue as " Neeli Machli" (blue fish). Last week, the Consul General of India in Medan, also shared photos of the natural phenomenon from the Betalbatim beach in Goa. It is assumed that this tide is traveling northwards along the west coast.
Another such episode called 'red tide'
These waves may look beautiful but the planktons are not good for the ecosystem. Smaller blooms may be harmless but slow moving larger blooms may result in extreme hypoxic conditions that might result in fish-die offs in the area, as per reports. Similarly, there is also another such episode called 'red tide', which is made of harmful algal blooms that emit red light. It is a rare incident, which is toxic for marine life.