By day, red tide
looks weird and smells worse. But by night, the microscopic phytoplankton
) that make up the red tide cause the waves to glow an erie blue. The LA Times quotes Professor Peter J. Franks
from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography
, who explains the bioluminescent
When jostled, each organism will give off a flash of blue light created by a chemical reaction within the cell. When billions and billions of cells are jostled -- say, by a breaking wave -- you get a seriously spectacular flash of light.
See another view of the glowing blue water, this time from a kayaker, after the break.