Monday, Jul. 13, 2009


Photo credit: DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD / St. Petersburg Times / ZUMA Press

The water is glowing, but fear not. It has nothing to do with toxic runoff. During the warmer months, Titusville's Mosquito Lagoon in the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge shimmers as a result of dinoflagellates, microscopic plankton that glow like lightning bugs. There are some 100,000 of the organisms per liter of water in the lagoon, and every ripple, splash or disturbance causes the affected area to give off a ghostly neon light. Schools of fish leave a psychedelic light trail, and a cupful of water splashes over your hands like tiny points of light. The best way to experience the bioluminescent phenomenon is through a kayak tour, and, it should go without saying, at night. Three-hour tour: $32 adults, $24 children