Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The Sparkle of Fireflies

Did you know that female fireflies evaluate potential mates based on the size and power of their glow as the males hover nearby? In turn, the females signal their interest by flashing back. During mating, the males not only provide sperm to the females, they also deliver a ‘nuptial gift’, a store of nutrients that nurture the young. That’s pretty interesting interesting information about sexual selection in fireflies, and I’d probably be content if that’s all I knew about fireflies.

That’s not enough for Sara Lewis though, who’s harboured a lifelong fascination with the 2,000 different species of fireflies. She wants to know everything there is to know about fireflies! As always, I find it so interesting to hear from someone who's had a lifelong passion for something I know nothing about.

Like all other species, fireflies are threatened due to habitat loss and light pollution (which interferes with those mating rituals).

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