Fluorescence in the Ocean at Milaidhoo Island Maldives

Jan 07, 2019 Ocean Stories

It’s as intriguing as it sounds, and the fluorescence to be seen underwater around Milaidhoo at night is truly stunning. Not only does it add a new dimension to diving and snorkelling (and to conventional night life), it also reveals a fascinating natural phenomenon outshining the brightest city lights.

Fluorescent night diving, abbreviated to fluo diving, is the fairly recent discovery of diving with a blue torch (not an ultraviolet light) and a lens filter in the diving mask. When the blue torch is switched on underwater, it shows the glowing colours which marine life re-emits as it transforms high-energy light into low-energy light.

Our special fluo diving torches enhance the stunning colours and unbelievable beauty of the underwater world. The fish and corals seen while diving in daylight, glow at night with spectacular hues of pink, green, yellow or blue. Fluo night diving is a different story when compared with the thrill of daytime diving, or even night diving. The smallest hidden creatures can be discovered thanks to this natural phenomenon which otherwise would be missed during the daytime.

Some fluorescent creatures found on the Milaidhoo house reef include lobsters, crabs, shrimps, many species of shellfish, several colourful fish, anemones and naturally, corals. Not all marine creatures exhibit this effect but in those that do, it can be very dramatic as corals become highly prominent and accentuated with fluorescence.

Fluorescence is not to be confused with phosphorescence, which relates to the capability to store light and re-emit it over a longer period of time, or with bio-luminescence, where light is produced and emitted by the animal using chemical reactions in the body. Whilst bio-luminescence is used for protection and predation, the evolution of fluorescent proteins is still being studied by researchers.

At Milaidhoo we offer fluo and regular night dives, from the shore or from a boat, to all certified scuba divers. For guests who have never experienced a night dive, we recommend they try one first to get comfortable being underwater at night, and then join us for a fluo experience. We also offer fluo night snorkelling for guests who are curious to see this phenomenon but are not certified in scuba diving.

Recent Posts