Noctiluca scintillans   (Macartney) Kofoid & Swezy,  1921 (Dinoflagellate)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Noctilucea

Image copyrights: Mats Kuylenstierna & Bengt Karlson

Cell very large, 2 mm at maximum diameter, globular.

Cell colorless or green, with green flagellates living symbiotically inside the cell.

The adult cell with indistinct transverse girdle, only trace at the ventral. Longitudinal sulcus interlinks with cytosome (gullet), with a tentacle arising from the bottom of the cell depression. Both flagella are rudimentary. Cell center with a large pusule. Zoospore produced in the process of reproduction, with transverse girdle, tentacle and a flagellum.

Synonym (s)
Medusa scintillans Macartney, 1810
Noctiluca miliaris Suriray ex Lamarck, 1816

Common Name (s)
• Sea Sparkle (English)
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Dangers

Habitat:  Estuarine, Coastal


• Orissa, Chilika Lake (Lat: 19.77) (Long: 85.33) INDIA
• Orissa, Bahuda Estuary (Lat: 19.17) (Long: 84.33) INDIA
• Karnataka, Off Panambur (Lat: 12.98) (Long: 75.5) INDIA
• Karnataka, Thaneerbavi (Lat: 12.9) (Long: 75.53) INDIA
• Karnataka, Ullal (Lat: 12.8) (Long: 75.75) INDIA
• Goa, Mandovi and Zuari Estuary INDIA (Record: 11/1979-10/1980)
• Kerala, Off Kochi (Lat: 10) (Long: 75.53) INDIA (Record: 19/08/2008)
• Kerala INDIA (Record: 09/2003)
• Tamil Nadu, Kaduviyar estuary INDIA (Record: 10/2005-09/2006)
• Kerala INDIA
• Kerala, Thangassery Bay INDIA (Record: 10/2002)
• Tamil Nadu, Pichavaram INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Vedaranyam (Lat: 10.27) (Long: 79.39) INDIA (Record: 10/2007-03/2010)
• Tamil Nadu, Vedaranyam (Lat: 10.82) (Long: 79.88) INDIA (Record: 10/2007-03/2010)
• East Coast (Lat: 10) (Long: 79) INDIA (Record: 01/1999-08/2002)
• East Coast (Lat: 21) (Long: 94) INDIA (Record: 01/1999-08/2002)

Literature Source(s)
  • FJR, Taylor (1976) Dinoflagellates from the International Indian Ocean Expedition Stuttgart, E. Schweizerbart'ssche verlagsbuchhandlung, Nagele u obermiller 227-234 Available at - NIO, RC, Kochi
  • R, Jyothibabu Ecobiogeography, spatial and temporal variations of microzooplankton along the east coast of India (Ph. D thesis) 235 pp Available at - NIO, RC, Kochi
  • Hussain, SM Brief report on biodiversity in the coastal areas of Pakistan p 113
  • Abbaasi, SA (1997) Wetlands of India-Ecology and Threats Discovery Publishing House,New Delhi II 1-182 Available at - NIO, RC Kochi
  • Madhav, GV and Kondalarao, B (2004) Distribution of phytoplankton in the coastal waters of east coast of India Indian Journal of Marine Sciences CSIR, New Delhi 33(3) 262-268 Available at -
  • Mishra, S and Panigrahy, RC (1999) Zooplankton ecology of the Bahuda estuary(Orissa), east coast of India Indian Journal of Marine Sciences CSIR, New Delhi 28 297-301 Available at - NIO, RC Kochi
  • Nayar, S; Gupta, TRC and Prabhu, HV (2001) Bloom of Noctiluca scintillans MaCartney in the Arabian sea off Mangalore, southwest India Asian Fisheries Science Asian Fisheries Society, Manila, Philippines 14 77-82 Available at - NIO, RC Kochi
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • Zhong, Z (1989) Marine planktology Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg New York Tokyo 454 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • SMHI Available at -
  • Devassy, VP; and Goes, JI (1988) Phytoplankton Community Structure and Succession in a Tropical Estuarine Complex (Central West Coast of India) Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science Academic Press 27(6) 671-685 Available at -
  • Padmakumar, KB; SreeRenjima, G; Fanimol, CL; Menon, RN and Sanjeevan, VN (2010) Preponderance of heterotrophic Noctiluca scintillans during a multi-species diatom bloom along the southwest coast of India International Journal of Oceans and Oceanography Research India Publications 4(1) 55-63 Available at -
  • Mohamed, KS; Kripa, V; Jugnu, R; Radhakrishnan, P; Alloycious, PS; Sharma, J; Joseph, M and Velayudhan, TS (2007) Mortality of farmed pearl oyster Pinctada fucata (Gould, 1850) due to the blooming of Noctiluca scintillans and Cochlodinium sp. at Kollam Bay, Kerala journal of marine biological association of india Cochin, India 49(2) 213-218 Available at -
  • Perumal, NV; Rajkumar, M; Perumal, P and Rajasekar, KT (2009) Seasonal variations of plankton diversity in the Kaduviyar estuary, Nagapattinam, southeast coast of India Journal of Environmental Biology Academy of Environmental Biology 30(6) 1035-1046 Available at -
  • Jugnu, R and Kripa, V (2008) Prevalence of non toxic and harmful algal blooms along Kerala coast Marine Fisheries Information Service Technical and Extension Series CMFRI 195 3-5 Available at -
  • Rajkumar, M; Perumal, P; Prabu, VA; Perumal, NV and Rajasekar, KT (2009) Phytoplankton diversity in Pichavaram mangrove waters from south-east coast of India Journal of Environmental Biology Triveni Enterprises 30(4) 489-498 Available at -
  • Manikannan, R; Asokan, S and Ali, AHMS (2011) Studies on species composition of plankton in the great Vedaranyam swamp of the Point Calimere wildlife sanctuary, Tamil Nadu, India World Journal of Fish and Marine Sciences IDOSI 3(4) 283-289 Available at -

Page last updated on:2012-03-05

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