The fireflies are a family of insects, lampíridas or Lampyridaeknown as light bugs because they have the ability to produce light through a chemical process known as bioluminescence. This process involves the chemical reaction of a substance called luciferin with an enzyme called luciferase.
Luciferin is a chemical found in the body, while luciferase is an enzyme that binds to luciferin, causing it to mix and release energy as light.
There are many species of fireflies, and most are found in wetlands, swamps, wooded areas, where their larvae have enough food to complete their development.
fireflies are beetles They lay their eggs in the ground as this is the perfect place for their larvae.
What do fireflies eat?
In their larval phase, they live underground feeding on the caterpillarsdifferent types of caterpillars, as well as snails and slugs. To feed themselves easily, they inject their prey with a liquid that paralyzes them and at the same time liquefies them inside so that they can eat them.
The larvae can emit light, so it is believed that they also use this ability as a defense mechanism.
Adult fireflies are also predators, which makes them good allies in the garden and biological control of certain pests, but they don’t eat much. They can even feed pollen and nectar.
They can emit light, which is why they are so famous. They do it to reproduce. Blinking and intensity are some of the factors that influence the choice of the ideal partner.
Another mechanism they have to defend themselves is their taste. The predators They don’t want to eat this insect because it tastes very bad thanks to a substance they produce called lucibuphagin.
Why are there no fireflies?
In recent years, a significant drop in the number of fireflies has been observed around the world. This is mainly due to habitat loss due to urban development and intensive agriculture. It has also been pointed out that the excessive use of insecticides and herbicides in areas inhabited by these insects can have a negative impact on their population.
Fireflies, like other insects beneficial to the garden, such as ladybugs (they can buy live ladybugs for the benefit of our cultures) or the the beesThey help in different processes. In the case of fireflies, especially as predators of pests.
For many insects, to attract them to the garden and keep them, you can plant flowers and make a insect hotel.
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