An iconic symbol of summer — the flashing firefly — is disappearing nationally but appears to be alive, well and thriving in Western Pennsylvania, according to experts.
• The firefly — officially named “Photuris pennsylvanica” — is Pennsylvania's state insect.
• The greenish-yellow light glows from the firefly's abdomen, the result of a chemical reaction.
• Fireflies use their light as a warning to predators at night and as part of a mating ritual.
• The glowing portion of fireflies was once used in medical research to track proteins in researching cystic fibrosis, cancer and multiple sclerosis. Now those materials are made synthetically.
• Firefly season in Pennsylvania usually runs through the mid-summer.
Whether you know them as Lightning Bugs or Fireflies, these are beneficial insects. They don't bite, they have no pincers, they don't attack, they don't carry disease, they are not poisonous, they don't even fly very fast. The larvae of most species are specialized predators and feed on other insect larvae, snails and slugs. (They are also reported to feed on earthworms.)
Thank you Judy at Cranberry Morning for inspiring these mosaics. Her posts of Wisconsin barns brought to mind many barns that I passed in days gone by which are just that,-- 'gone'. So I've been capturing some of those that are left.
Here and There
This one is on an old homestead called The Hermitage
Also like the corn crib to the left with the rusty roof