Underreported: Disappearing Fireflies

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Fireflies seem to be disappearing throughout the world. We look into where they’re going, why they might be disappearing, and how their absence could affect our ecosystem. Dr. Christopher Cratsley is a biology professor and firefly expert at Fitchburg State College.


Dr. Christopher Cratsley

Comments [5]

Gwen McDonald from Lilburn, Georgia

I have a specific interest in firefles based on what was termed, "a happening", in my own backyard.
We live in the "burbs", 20 minutes from downtown Atlanta. Starting in 2005, thousands upon thousands of fireflies suddenly appeared in our back and front yards, only in our yard. The following years, for about five years, we had slowly deminished numbers until this year, 2011, we saw only three. While the fireflies were active, we opened our "happening" to students, experts, and news media who were much in awe. We miss the fireflies. Will they ever return?

Sep. 17 2011 09:59 PM
David Linker from Greenpoint, Brooklyn

In my garden here on India Street in Greenpoint I see many fireflies throughout the summer. I grew up in FarRockaway in the 1940's & 1950's and there were similar quantites then, as it appears to me.

Dec. 18 2008 01:52 PM
Sheree from Manhattan

I'm so glad that you are covering this topic. I've definitely noticed that there are far fewer than there used to be when I was younger. I saw the most amazing sight when I was a child: driving through a rural area of central Georgia (USA), we saw what looked like 1000s of lightening bugs (as we called them) rising up from a field---looked absolutely magical. I've seen so few in recent years.

Dec. 18 2008 01:31 PM
kerry from williamsburg

I had never seen a firefly until I moved to the Northeastern United States from South Africa. Are they more likely to be found in cooler or less arid climates?

Dec. 18 2008 01:26 PM
Caitlin from Sunset Park

Could this be related to the disappearing honey bees?

Dec. 18 2008 12:22 PM

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