FIREFLY (LIGHTNING BUG)















Photo Courtesy:

http://insects.about.com/od/beetles/a/10-Cool-Facts-About-Fireflies.htm
 

Remember back when you caught these little guys and placed them in a jar to watch them glow?  And, I knew kids who were cruel. They would pinch off their lit abdomen and place it on a stick just to watch it as they swirled it about like a fireworks sparkler.

Beyond that, the firefly isn't classified as an insect, but it is a beetle.  There are four stages in its life -- egg, larva, pupa, and adult.  The egg takes approximately 30 days to hatch into the larva stage, where it remains for one to three years.  When the larva finally gets big enough it digs down in the earth and forms a protective hard shell for the pupa stage.  The pupa develops into the adult and emerges in the following early summer.  It is then known as the firefly.

Their numbers are dwindling, but it seems difficult to pinpoint the reason why.  Perhaps it's because of our lust to eliminate creepy crawlies in our yards and fields with insecticides?  I certainly don't have the answer, and would have to leave that to the professionals.

Fireflies are active at night, using their luminescence to warn predators away, to attract mates and prey, and to even attract other lightning bugs.  They eat such delicacies as pollen and nectar, or they may not eat at all.  However, once they mate they are at the end of their line.  They lay their eggs and the cycle starts all over again.

Sources:

http://insects.about.com/od/beetles/a/10-Cool-Facts-About-Fireflies.htm

http://insects.about.com/od/beetles/a/10-Cool-Facts-About-Fireflies.htm

http://animals.mom.me/life-cycle-fireflies-8281.html

http://www.firefly.org/

https://www.highlightskids.com/science-questions/what-do-fireflies-eat

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