Observations of bioluminescence in the Oceanic Shoals CMR

Surprisingly common across the world's oceans, bioluminescence (watch a video of how it works) occurs when a chemical reaction in living cells causes them to emit light - typically in shades of blue and green. This can happen within the bodies of a wide range of organisms (here is a list), ranging in size from dolphins to microscopic plankton. The Australian Hydrographic Service within the Royal Australian Navy is responsible for creating nautical charts to ensure safe navigation in Australian waters. While undertaking the hydrographic surveys needed to create the charts, they sometimes also record where bioluminescence occurs.

Use the interactive map below to explore where such voyages have recorded bioluminescence near or within NW Australia's Oceanic Shoals CMR. Click on a green dot to find out when the observation was made, what the sea conditions were, and what colour and type of bioluminescence was seen.

How to use the map

Full extent icon Click on this icon at the top left of the map to see a full screen version.
Zoom Icon Click on this icon also at the top left of the map to zoom in closer to (+) or further from (-) the map.