Thursday, May 20, 2010

synchronous fireflies

Most are familiar with fireflies from our childhood. Catching them in the backyard and collecting enough specimens for a lantern made from a jar. But in the Great Smoky Mountains there's a unique species of fireflies (phontinus carolinus) that flash their lights in unison!

These tiny creatures take 2 years to mature from a larvae state to adult; then they only have 21 days to find a mate. In mid June, these little glowing beetles put on a fanatastic display of synchronized lights. It's not known why these fireflies are compelled to get on the same page of music; sometimes they flash in waves and other times it may be random.

Visit the Great Smoky Mountains webpage for the Light Show tour info

1 comment:

Tsuki aka LittleGrayFox said...

in all my life, i've never seen one. maybe we just don't have them here in WA state :( but I sure would love to see them up close one day :)

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