Deep in the jungles of Maharashtra, you’ll find the Bhimshankar Wildlife Reserve, roughly 100 km from East of Mumbai. Why are we telling you this? Because a pretty strange and fascinating natural phenomenon occurs in this wildlife reserve. When the sun goes down and the dark sets on the forest, the entire forest glows and comes alight! No, we are not tripping, it actually happens and here’s everything you need to know about it!
Why does this happen?
This is not some kind of a mystery. It’s actually a scientific phenomenon known as bio-luminescent fungi. It is nature’s magical charm! It is usually witnessed only in tropical forests that have decaying wood and is also known as foxfire or fairy fire.
The glow is thanks to luciferase which is an oxidative enzyme that emits light when it comes in contact with a light-emitting substance present on the rotting bark of trees. While it’s fairly normal to find this happening in water bodies, (read: glowing marine organisms) but bio-luminescence on land is pretty rare. Only 70 out of 10,000 species of fungi are capable of it!
The best time to witness this phenomenon
The best time to visit the Western Ghats to witness this beauty is during monsoons. From June to October is the ideal time. However, don’t be disappointed because spotting this rare phenomenon is not guaranteed. It all depends on the intensity of rains, moisture present in these forests and also some luck. Apart from Bimashankar Wildlife Reserve, you can also spot this sighting the Chorla Ghats in Goa.