Monday, September 20, 2010

Firefly

Fireflies or Lightning Bugs are not actually flies at all! They are actually beetles within the order Coleoptera and the specific family Lampyridae. There are over 2,000 species of Firefly, and they can be found across the planet in both tropical and temperate climates, typically in areas are have a more moist habitat.

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So how do fireflies glow? Bioluminescence! They have organs dedicated to the production of light situation under their abdomens. Difference species produce different types of light flashes, and the lights are used for both finding mates and for defense. Even firefly larvae glow! Interestingly, the light that they emit produces no heat, making the light 100% efficient. Fireflies are even used for scientific purposes to study energy conversion.

As larvae, Fireflies consume other insects, including other species of Firefly. As adults however... well, no one really knows what they eat. Scientist suspect that they feed off of pollen and nectar, though they may not eat at all. Fireflies are adults only long enough to find a mate and produce eggs, so eating may not even be necessary.

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