Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Glow of the Firefly



Where I'm living now, fireflies are frequent in number, and not shy in their glowing.

Tell us your secrets, Firefly.

But why do they glow? 

If you must know, the firefly glows for a variety of reasons. 

They glow to attract prey. The firefly is a flying beetle. it will eat you if you are smaller then it. When they are larvae, or, as some call them, glow worms, they glow to discourage predators, the glow serving as a warning to the bugs that are bigger then it, since the larvae contain chemicals within themselves that are either toxic or just gross. 

And, of course, when they reach a certain age, you know what I mean, they glow to mate. Wouldn't you, if you could? Glow, that is.

They Could Rule Us All

There is a chemical reaction that takes place in the firefly's abdomen. It involves three ingredients: luciferin, oxygen, and, of course, luciferase. 

The key to attracting a mate, if you are a female firefly, and a classy one (not one from the east side), is all in the rate and wavelength of which the firefly flashes. Because the firefly is not one species, it is many, and not only that, they are many different species mingling with each other. There could be a lot of confusion. 

The rate of the glow shares with others what species it is, to procreate correctly. And not create some mutant two headed beetle monster. 

Glow Worms, Yo

This is an important point. 

The glowing is not random. It is not is without reason. Or even just one reason. Their glow is controlled. Their glow is a message. 

For me, their glow is peace. Comfort. I could sit and watch them for hours. There's a calm that I feel from seeing them. There is really nothing that amazes me more then seeing them flash before me. 

In short, I really fucking love these bugs.