Most dinoflagellates (Dinoflagellata) are single cells that swim about
using flagella, and like plants many of them make their own food by
photosynthesis. These cells contain the brownish pigment fucoxanthin as
well as chlorophyll. Dinoflagellates are abundant in the plankton of oceans
and some, like Noctiluca, produce an eerie, glowing luminescence on
the surface of the sea. When conditions are right, some dinoflagellates
have a population explosion, and genera like Gymnodinium, which is
reddish in colour, can produce "red tides". Another name for this Phylum is
Pyrrhophyta, which means "fire plants".
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