You might not find the average mushroom especially beautiful, but bioluminescent mushrooms – those unique species that glow in the dark – are undeniably alluring. Glowing mushrooms can be found around the world, but typically pop up in tropical and temperate climates given their need for moisture and warmth. With at least 71 species of mushrooms that glow in the dark, there are specimens on nearly every continent.
These pictures of glow in the dark mushrooms show how beautiful they can be. That beauty is more than just skin deep, too. Fungi tend to glow to attract pollinators like flies and other insects, but the way they do that is pretty interesting. They use a similar technique to fireflies and other animals that glow, creating an internal chemical reaction that exhibits energy in the form of light. Their glow isn't just cool to look at in photos; it's a power they have as a kingdom of organisms that's neither plant nor animal.