Currently viewing the category: "Fireflies and Glowworms"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What’s this firefly doing?
Location: SW Virginia
July 2, 2015 11:25 am
Hi! I caught this firefly stretching its abdomen and folding the edges of its wings last night (July 1, 2015), in SW Virginia, about an hour & a half before dark.
There’s a video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8GAPXxUQ2nI
What’s it doing?
Also, have you ever noticed, if you have a firefly on your hand, it always wants to climb to the highest point to take off? You can turn your hand over and it will turn around and head for the new high point. Sometimes you can do this many times before it flies away.
thanks!
Signature: Firefly paparazzi

Firefly

Firefly

Dear Firefly paparazzi,
Our guess is that this Firefly is preparing for its maiden flight, that it just emerged from the pupa and it is trying out all its parts before taking off in search of a mate.

Firefly

Firefly

Firefly

Firefly

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Glow worm in Colorado
Location: 38’48’28.8 – 104’53’57.3
June 28, 2015 11:06 pm
The night of June 27 , 2015 22:15 I was returning from a very long hike in the front range of Colorado Springs. As I walked up the the HighiDrive road I noticed what looked like the reflection of the moon light off of a crystal in the granite of a large rock. As I moved the light didn’t go away. Upon closer inspection it was very green in color. I knew it must be chemoluminesance. I grew up in these mountains for over 40 years. I have never seen this here before. It was at 7520ft and there were several of them along 1/2 mile portion of the road. The one in the photo was much brighter then the other ones I saw. The question is what is the life cycle of this insect and what are the limiting factors keeping there numbers down? Photo attached. Thank you.
Signature: Bob Zook

Glowworm

Glowworm

Dear Bob,
Though they are commonly called Pink Glowworms, this member of the genus
Microphotus is actually a Firefly in the family Lampyridae, and not a true Glowworm in the family Phengodidae.  There is not much information on BugGuide.  In a 2005 posting on our site, we learned through Eric Eaton who contacted an expert that:  “He notes that they were all females collected in June and July and that, although their identities are not certain, they are probably pecosensis. “  Based on information we have learned through the years, we suspect this is an adult, larviform female.  We have been receiving numerous recent comments to our Pink Glowworm posts regarding new sightings.

Glow of a Glowworm

Glow of a Glowworm

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: red and black bug
Location: wi,usa
May 25, 2015 8:36 pm
Just curious what type of bug things it’s and is it dangerous?
Signature: liz

Male Glowworm

Male Glowworm

Dear Liz,
This is a male Glowworm Beetle, probably
Phengodes plumosa, and it is perfectly harmless.

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Subject: What’s this bug?
Location: Western Washington state
May 24, 2015 8:03 pm
I found this bug on the side of my house in western Washington state. It’s been relatively cool and it’s near the end of May. The red “eyes” are fascinating. Thanks for your time. Kirsten
Signature: However you’d like

Winter Dark Firefly

Winter Firefly

Dear Kirsten,
We believe we have correctly identified your beetle as a relative of the Winter Firefly,
Ellychnia corrusca, thanks to a posting on Arthur Evan’s What’s Bugging You? site where it states:  “Winter dark fireflies are mostly dull black, but the sides of their flattened, shield-like midsections are marked with yellow, orange, or reddish arched bands. Their soft, pliable wing covers are clothed in short, fine, golden hairs.  Mature larvae pupate in dead logs, especially pines. Adults emerge in late summer and fall and are sometimes encountered on trees or on the flowers of goldenrod and other asters. As temperatures begin to drop, they seek protected places under bark for the winter. The beetles reappear on late winter and early spring days, either resting on bark or circled around sap flows on maples like cattle around a trough.  Like their more familiar cousins of summer, winter black fireflies are bioluminescent, at least for a while. Both the larval and pupal stages produce their own light. Even freshly emerge adults maintain this youthful glow, but as the beetles grow older they lose their light-producing organs.”  Since that is a mostly eastern species, we believe your individual is a member of the same genus.  A related species in the genus is Ellychnia facula, which according to BugGuide is found in the:  “Rocky Mountains from southeast British Columbia to Idaho.”  Your individual might also be Ellychnia greeni, which according to BugGuide is:  “Found along the west coast from southern British Columbia to northern California.”

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Subject: pink glow worm?
Location: northern california
May 16, 2015 10:11 pm
Please see my pic for both a photo and a description of the find. This happened May 14th in a rural area outside of Santa Rosa, CA. Oak woodlands. Is it a pink glow worm, adult female? Thanks!
Signature: Tony

Pink Glowworm

Pink Glowworm

Dear Tony,
Thanks so much for sending us your account of a female Pink Glowworm, Microphotus angustus, sighting.

Description of Pink Glowworm Sighting

Description of Pink Glowworm Sighting

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Subject: Pink Glow Work
Location: Lake Lopez, California
May 11, 2015 1:34 pm
We found this worm at Lake Lopez this weekend on an Oak Tree. Very fascinating!
Signature: DiAnn

Pink Glowworm

Female Pink Glowworm

Dear DiAnn,
We believe your female Pink Glowworm (actually a Firefly) is
Microphotus angustus, which is pictured on BugGuide, though there is a dearth of information on the site.  Luckily our favorite text for local species in our area, The Insects of the Los Angeles Basin by Charles L. Hogue, provides a wealth of information:  “the female of the Pink glowworm (which is 1/2 in.,or 13 mm, long) communicates her location to the male (1/4 in., or 6 mm, long) by emitting a continuous uniform luminescent glow.  The adult male has the usual firefly beetle form, but the female is ‘larviform’ (wingless and elongate like the larva …).  The males are not seen as often as the females because they give light only when disturbed, and the light is weak and not used in communication.  The female is fairly common in late spring to early summer in the foothill canyons  … .  Found at night by its glow and in the daytime under stones lying on the leaf mold in grassy areas, the adult Pink Glowworm is easily recognized by the pink color of the flattened segments;  the terminal segments are yellowish.  The segments of the larvae of both male and female are blackish with pink margins.”  We are very excited to include and to feature your Pink Glowworm documentation.

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination