Cool Facts About Lightning Bugs (Fireflies)

Super Cool Facts About Lightning Bugs (Fireflies)

What do you think of when you see Lightning Bugs or Fireflies?

I think of the warm summer nights catching them in mason jars. They light up a field beautifully at the first signs of darkness, almost making you feel safe.

Facts About Lightning Bugs:

  • Fireflies do not bite, do not have pincers, do not carry disease and, in fact, are quite harmless.
  • There are more than 2,000 species of fireflies, a type of beetle. Despite their name, only some species produce adults that glow. In the western United States, fireflies cannot produce light.
  • The light emmited is the most efficient light in the world. Nearly 100% of the energy in the chemical reaction is emitted as light.
  • Each species has its own flash pattern. It might look like Morse code, one short flash, followed by a long flash, etc. but scientists can identify the species based on the flashing pattern. A type of firefly called a Blue Ghost stays lit, rather than flashing.  Click here for a picture of the Blue Ghost Trails
  • In some places fireflies synchronize their flashing. This is AMAZING!  Click Here to find locations to see these light shows.
  • Fireflies live on every continent except Antarctica. Fireflies live in moist areas, especially at the edges where water in a pond, lake, stream or river meets a forest or field.

Speaking of Habitats…..

Fireflies are on the decline. The following factors that may be contributing to firefly decline include light pollution and habitat destruction—if a field where fireflies lives is paved over, the fireflies don’t migrate to another field, they just disappear forever.

If you are catching Fireflies in a mason jar:

  • make sure that there are air holes punched in the top
  • some grass
  • a moist paper towel in the bottom

They can only live like this for a couple of days before they must be released.

Want to help save Fireflies from disappearing?

Since many of the fields locally are being repurposed, catch some of the fireflies in these fields and relocate them to another.  Not only will you have a great light show, but you will also be doing your part to help others enjoy the show.

These Facts About Lightning Bugs are meant for educational and fun purposes.

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