Bermuda Glow Worms
So if you can time it right, you can witness a spectacle rarely seen elsewhere in the world. On the night of the display and about an hour after the sunset, you can see fire worms circling around the sea surface in the dark. They release a bright green glow that illuminates the entire water area.
Actually the female glow worms first rise from the muddy bottom of the bay and start going in circles above the sea surface while giving off the glows. They emit the bright green fluorescent chemical to attract the males who too shortly start shooting up from the bottom and join the spectacular game of lights while they mate. This is often called the "Nature's Fireworks Shows".
While a glow worm can grow to the size of 35mm, average female size is about 20mm and males are much smaller averaging to 12mm. These fire worms are usually found in the shallow bays around Bermuda and they live in the protected rocky bottoms. They swim up to the surface when the time comes for mating.
Bermuda Glow Worm Mating Dance
If you see carefully, you will notice that they mate as they fly. The female worms release bioluminescent slime to attract the males. And the males too flash the bioluminescence to indicate that they are approaching. Once the males come close, the females release eggs and the males then release sperms to fertilize them.
Upon mating, the male and the female worms release an explosion of glow into the water as if a firework took place. And you know that the mating ritual was completed between a couple. Thousands of them keep going in circles in a swarm looking to mate.
The mating ritual lasts for few minutes and takes place again next month. Many tourists while planning for their vacation, take into consideration the timing of this spectacular display. It was Christopher Columbus who first noticed this spectacle of glow worm mating dance in 1492.
You can see it from the shore when it's dark. Some of the best places to experience this magical show is from the bridge at Ferry Reach Park near the Whalebone Bay in St. George's parish, or at the Flatts Inlet.
You can also sometimes see it at the Hamilton Harbor.
Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute (BUEI) and Bermuda Zoological Society both organize Glow Worm Cruises during the season so that you can go to the area and watch it from a close distance. For BUEI the rates are $50 per person ($35 if you are a member of the Institute). You can carry your snacks and non-alcoholic beverages. There is a cash bar on the boat. The time of cruise departure varies depending on the time of sunset. The spectacular display starts exactly 56 minutes after the sunset. The cruise leaves from the BUEI's own dock and goes to a calm area on the sea. You can call BUEI at 441/297-7314 to get more information about booking the cruise tours.
1) Check out Bermuda Animals & Wildlife for full information on Bermuda's animal habitats.
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