Weird little green things - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 11 Old 08-20-2007 Thread Starter
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Weird little green things

This was very cool to watch, but I have no clue what they were; Thousands of little somethings in the water glowing florescent green color, as they darted around they left a florescent green trail.

Anybody have an idea what these little scoots were ??

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post #2 of 11 Old 08-20-2007
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Yup,cool huh? i forgot what theyre called, some luminescent plankton? lots of em on Catalina Island

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post #3 of 11 Old 08-20-2007
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Plankton that bioluminesce in response to movement, like that of a hull. It's primarily caused by dinoflagelletes and certain types of algae, wee critters at the bottom of the food chain.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bioluminescence
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post #4 of 11 Old 08-20-2007
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Phosphorescence making the wake glow is an interesting thing to watch on those long overnight passages. It’s even more fun to row in or even better, to swim in!
When I was making my money on the Lady Elaine out o’ Pigeon Cove, killing Mackerel on those cold winter nights offshore, we could spot the schools by that glow. “Fire in the Water” the old-timers called it. Ol’ Georgie Carter, he’d sit atop the wheel-house, pickin’ out the biggest schools like mother shoppin’ at the butcher’s shop, n’ pickin’ out the finest cuts! No modern fish-finder could come close to the smarts of those old boys!

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post #5 of 11 Old 08-20-2007
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In the Chesapeake we often have these critters:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ctenophore
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post #6 of 11 Old 08-20-2007
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Most likely they were Ctenophores. They occur in most of the world's oceans and are truly magical to watch. I first saw them in person while wading in the shallows around Bimini Island at dusk. They left "stardust" trail behind me whenever I stepped and disturbed them. Very cool!

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post #7 of 11 Old 08-20-2007
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I agree with swimming and rowing, but it is fun to ride a dinghy with an outboard. The noise spoils the romance, but the florescent trail behind the dinghy is awesome.

There are few more possibilities:
- How many Margatitas did you have?
- Did the boom hit you very hard on the head?
If the answer is "more than 3" for Q1 and "yes" for Q2 it may not be the plankton.


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post #8 of 11 Old 08-20-2007
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Thanks! I was recenlty anchored in Lake Tashmoo in Martha's Vinyard and noticed the wonderful creatures in the wake on my RIB and wondered what they were. Now I know. They wre truely wonderful to watch and added greatly to the night.
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post #9 of 11 Old 08-20-2007
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An experience we do not share on the Great Lakes.
They sound very interesting.

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post #10 of 11 Old 08-20-2007 Thread Starter
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Thanks guys

I've seen some pretty cool critters out here over the years but these little buggers were difinitly the most interesting

We watched hundreds of them for about 40 mins, then they were gone, reminded me of that movie 'ABISS'

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