photo by Michael Dawes (Flickr CC)

Australian surfers described the phenomenon as “insane” and “out of control” and probably said “dude” a lot, but since it was Australia they may have just said “mate”.

What they were talking about is the frothy, thick sea foam that covered areas of ocean along the coast of Victoria, an area popular with surfers.

According to the Herald Sun the sea foam stretched 5km offshore and was meters thick.

Sea foam is sometimes a “natural” phenomena caused my the agitation of organic matter such as decomposing algal blooms. However, pollution, raw sewage and stormwater can contribute to these algal blooms and sea foam, which may contain hazardous pollutants, dangerous bacteria and viruses. Other types of sea foam contain crude oil, giving it a delicious chocolate mousse look and feel. Not smell or taste, though – let’s be clear on that.

Sea foam can also hide dangerous rocks or other hazards.

Keep the above in mind when you watch these surfers frolic in the very fluffy, very fun looking clouds of sea foam.

Nothing unsafe about enjoying the below video report on the phenomenon from ITN News, however. It is pretty cool. Also check out these photos in the Daily Mail.