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User: Chukwunedu
Article: Firefly
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{{two other uses||the science fiction television series|Firefly (TV series)}}
 
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{{Taxobox
 
| image = Photuris lucicrescens.jpg
 
| image_caption = ''Photuris lucicrescens''<ref>Cirrus Digital [http://www.cirrusimage.com/beetle_firefly_Photuris_lucicrescens.htm Firefly ''Photuris lucicrescens'']</ref>
 
| regnum = [[Animal]]ia
 
| phylum = [[Arthropod]]a
 
| classis = [[Insect]]a
 
| ordo = [[Coleoptera]]
 
| subordo = [[Polyphaga]]
 
| infraordo = [[Elateriformia]]
 
| superfamilia = [[Elateroidea]]
 
| familia = '''Lampyridae'''
 
| familia_authority = [[Pierre André Latreille|Latreille]], 1817
 
| subdivision_ranks = [[Subfamily|Subfamilies]]
 
| subdivision =
 
[[Cyphonocerinae]]<br />
 
[[Lampyrinae]]<br />
 
[[Luciolinae]]<br />
 
[[Ototetrinae]] <small>(disputed)</small><br />
 
[[Photurinae]]<br />
 
and see [[#Systematics|below]]
 
----
 
[[Genera]] ''[[incertae sedis]]'':<br />
 
''[[Oculogryphus]]''<br /><!-- AmMusNovit3600 -->
 
''[[Pterotus]]'' <small>LeConte, 1859</small><!-- MolPhylEvol45:22. -->
 
}}
 
 
'''Lampyridae''' is a [[family (biology)|family]] of [[insects]] in the [[beetle]] [[order (biology)|order]] Coleoptera. They are winged beetles, and commonly called '''fireflies''' or '''lightning bugs''' for their conspicuous [[crepuscular]] use of [[bioluminescence]] to attract mates or prey. Fireflies produce a "cold light", with no [[infrared]] or [[ultraviolet]] frequencies. This chemically produced light from the lower abdomen may be yellow, green, or pale red, with [[wavelength]]s from 510 to 670 nanometers.<ref>[http://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/life/zoology/insects-arachnids/question554.htm HowStuffWorks "How do fireflies light up?"]. Science.howstuffworks.com (19 January 2001). Retrieved on 22 June 2013.</ref>
 
 
About 2,000 species of firefly are found in [[temperate]] and [[tropical]] environments. Many are in [[marsh]]es or in wet, wooded areas where their [[larva]]e have abundant sources of food. These larvae emit light and often are called "[[glowworm]]s", in particular, in Eurasia. In the Americas, "glow worm" also refers to the related [[Phengodidae]]. In many species, both male and female fireflies have the ability to fly, but in some species, females are flightless.<ref>[http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110405093656.htm In Fireflies, Flightless Females Lose out On Gifts from Males]. Science Daily (27 June 2011). Retrieved on 22 June 2013.</ref>
 
 
==Biology==
 
[[File:Luciola4 crop.png|left|thumb|A [[larviform female]] showing light-emitting organs on [[abdomen]]]]
 
Fireflies tend to be brown and soft-bodied, often with the [[elytra]] (front wings) more leathery than in other beetles. Although the females of some species are similar in appearance to males, [[larviform female]]s are found in many other firefly species. These females can often be distinguished from the larvae only because they have [[compound eye]]s. The most commonly known fireflies are [[Nocturnality|nocturnal]],<ref>[http://www.thefreedictionary.com/firefly firefly]. Free Dictionary.com. Retrieved on 22 June 2013.</ref> although there are numerous species that are [[diurnality|diurnal]]. Most diurnal species are nonluminescent; however, some species that remain in shadowy areas may produce light.
 
 
A few days after mating, a female lays her fertilized eggs on or just below the surface of the ground. The eggs hatch three to four weeks later, and the larvae feed until the end of the summer. The larvae are commonly called glowworms, not to be confused with the distinct beetle family [[Phengodidae]] or fly genus ''[[Arachnocampa]]''. Lampyrid larvae have simple eyes. The term glowworm is also used for both adults and larvae of species such as ''[[Lampyris noctiluca]]'', the common European glowworm, in which only the nonflying adult females glow brightly and the flying males glow only weakly and intermittently.
 
 
Fireflies hibernate [[insect winter ecology|over winter]] during the larval stage, some species for several years. Some do this by burrowing underground, while others find places on or under the bark of trees. They emerge in the spring. After several weeks of feeding, they [[pupa]]te for 1.0 to 2.5 weeks and emerge as adults. The larvae of most species are specialized [[predator]]s and feed on other larvae, terrestrial [[snail]]s, and slugs. Some are so specialized that they have grooved [[mandible (insect)|mandibles]] that deliver digestive fluids directly to their prey. Adult diet varies: some are predatory, while others feed on plant [[pollen]] or [[nectar]]. Some, like the European Glow-worm beetle, ''[[Lampyris noctiluca]]'', have no mouth.
 
 
Most fireflies are quite distasteful to and sometimes poisonous to vertebrate predators. This is due at least in part to a group of steroid pyrones known as lucibufagins (LBGs), which are similar to [[cardiotonic]] [[Bufanolide|bufadienolides]] found in some poisonous toads.<ref>{{Cite journal
 
| last1 = Eisner | first1 = Thomas
 
| last2 = Wiemer | first2 = David
 
| last3 = Haynes | first3 = Leroy
 
| last4 = Meinwald | first4 = Jerrold
 
| title = Lucibufagins: Defensive steroids from the fireflies Photinus ignitus and P. marginellus (Coleoptera: Lampyridae)
 
| pmid=16592501 | year = 1978
 
| volume = 75
 
| issue = 2
 
| pages = 905–8
 
| pmc = 411366
 
| journal = Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America }}</ref>
 
 
===Light and chemical production===
 
[[File:Firefly composite.jpg|thumb|left|Firefly (species unknown) captured in eastern Canada – the top picture is taken with a flash, the bottom only with the self-emitted light]]
 
[[File:GluehwuermchenImWald.jpg|thumb|right|Fireflies in the woods near [[Nuremberg, Germany]], exposure time 30 seconds]]
 
Light production in fireflies is due to a type of chemical reaction called [[bioluminescence]]. This process occurs in specialized light-emitting [[organ (biology)|organ]]s, usually on a firefly's lower abdomen. The enzyme [[luciferase]] acts on the [[Firefly luciferin|luciferin]], in the presence of [[magnesium]] ions, [[Adenosine triphosphate|ATP]], and oxygen to produce light. [[Gene]]s coding for these substances have been inserted into many different organisms (see [[Luciferase#Applications|Luciferase – Applications]]). Firefly luciferase is used in [[forensics]], and the enzyme has medical uses — in particular, for detecting the presence of ATP or magnesium. It has been speculated that Baroque painter [[Caravaggio]] may have prepared his canvases with a powder of dried fireflies to create a photosensitive surface on which he projected the image to be painted.<ref>[http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/arts_and_culture/7936946.stm "Caravaggio was early 'photographer'."] BBC News. 11 March 2009. </ref>
 
 
All fireflies glow as larvae. Bioluminescence serves a different function in lampyrid larvae than it does in adults. It appears to be a warning signal to [[predator]]s, since many firefly larvae contain chemicals that are distasteful or toxic.
 
 
Light in adult beetles was originally thought to be used for similar warning purposes, but now its primary purpose is thought to be used in mate selection. Fireflies are a classic example of an organism that uses bioluminescence for sexual selection. They have a variety of ways to communicate with mates in courtships: steady glows, flashing, and the use of chemical signals unrelated to photic systems.<ref>{{Cite journal
 
| last1 = Stanger-Hall | first1 = K.F.
 
| last2 = Lloyd | first2 = J.E.
 
| last3 = Hillis | first3 = D.M.
 
| title = Phylogeny of North American fireflies (Coleoptera: Lampyridae): implications for the evolution of light signals
 
| journal = Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution |volume=45 |issue=1 |pages=33–49 |doi=10.1016/j.ympev.2007.05.013
 
| year = 2007 | pmid=17644427}}</ref>
 
 
Some species, especially lightning bugs of the [[genera]] ''[[Photinus (beetle)|Photinus]]'', ''[[Photuris (genus)|Photuris]]'', and ''[[Pyractomena]]'', are distinguished by the unique courtship flash patterns emitted by flying males in search of females. In general, females of the ''Photinus'' genus do not fly, but do give a flash response to males of their own species.
 
 
[[File:Leuchtkäfer - Firefly.JPG|thumb|right|Firefly larva]]
 
Tropical fireflies, in particular, in [[Southeast Asia]], routinely synchronise their flashes among large groups. This phenomenon is explained as [[phase synchronization]]<ref>{{Cite book | last = Murray | first = James D. | author-link = James D. Murray | title = Mathematical Biology | publisher = Springer | year = 2002 | volume = I. An Introduction | pages = 295–299 | edition = 3rd | url = http://books.google.com/?id=1QM3h80gb_IC&printsec=frontcover| isbn = 978-0-387-95223-9 }}</ref> and spontaneous order. At night along river banks in the Malaysian jungles (the most notable ones found near Kuala Selangor), fireflies (''kelip-kelip'' in the Malay language) synchronise their light emissions precisely. Current hypotheses about the causes of this behavior involve diet, social interaction, and altitude. In the Philippines, thousands of fireflies can be seen all year-round in the town of Donsol (called ''aninipot'' or ''totonbalagon'' in [[Bikol language|Bicol]]). In the [[United States]], one of the most famous sightings of fireflies blinking in [[unison]] occurs annually near [[Elkmont, Tennessee]] in the [[Great Smoky Mountains]] during the first weeks of June.<ref>[http://www.nps.gov/grsm/naturescience/fireflies.htm Synchronous Fireflies – Great Smoky Mountains National Park]. Nps.gov (3 June 2013). Retrieved on 22 June 2013.</ref> [[Congaree National Park]] in [[South Carolina]] is another host to this phenomenon.<ref>Cross, Robert (23 May 2004) [http://web.archive.org/web/20050318055636/http://www.seacoastonline.com/2004news/05232004/travel/17745.htm Tree huggin']. Chicago Tribune.</ref>
 
 
Female ''Photuris'' fireflies are known for mimicking the mating flashes of other "lightning bugs" for the sole purpose of [[predator|predation]]. Target males are attracted to what appears to be a suitable mate, and are then eaten. For this reason sometimes the ''Photuris'' species are referred to as "''[[femme fatale]]'' fireflies."
 
 
Many fireflies do not produce light. Usually these species are diurnal, or day-flying, such as those in the genus ''[[Ellychnia]]''. A few diurnal fireflies that inhabit primarily shadowy places, such as beneath tall plants or trees, are luminescent. One such genus is ''[[Lucidota]]''.
 
These fireflies use pheromones to signal mates. This is supported by the fact that some basal groups do not show bioluminescence and, rather, use chemical signaling. ''Phosphaenus hemipterus'' has photic organs, yet is a diurnal firefly and displays large antennae and small eyes. These traits strongly suggest pheromones are used for sexual selection, while photic organs are used for warning signals. In controlled experiments, males coming from downwind arrived at females first, thus male arrival was correlated with wind direction, indicating males' chemotaxis into a pheromone plume. Males were also found to be able to find females without the use of visual cues, when the sides of test [[Petri dish]]es were covered with black tape. This and the facts that females do not light up at night and males are diurnal point to the conclusion that sexual communication in ''P. hemipterus'' is entirely based on pheromones.<ref>{{cite journal
 
| last1 = De Cock | first1 = R.
 
| last2 = Matthysen | first2 = E.
 
| title = Sexual communication by pheromones in a firefly, ''Phosphaenus hemipterus'' (Coleoptera: Lampyridae)
 
| doi=10.1016/j.anbehav.2005.01.011 | year = 2005
 
| journal = Animal Behaviour
 
| volume = 70
 
| issue = 4
 
| pages = 807 }}</ref>
 
 
===Systematics===
 
[[File:Cyphonocerus ruficollis 2552543412 crop.png|thumb|left|''[[Cyphonocerus ruficollis]]'', a weakly glowing member of the [[Cyphonocerinae]]]]
 
Firefly systematics, as with many insects, are in a constant state of flux, as new species continue to be discovered. The five [[subfamilies]] listed above are the most commonly accepted ones, though others, such as the [[Amydetinae]] and [[Psilocladinae]], have been proposed. This was mainly done in an attempt to revise the [[Lampyrinae]], which bit by bit had become something of a "[[wastebin taxon]]" to hold ''[[incertae sedis]]'' species and genera of fireflies. Other changes have been proposed, such as merging the [[Ototetrinae]] into the [[Luciolinae]], but the arrangement used here appears to be the most frequently seen and stable layout for the time being. Though most groups appear to be [[monophyletic]], some (e.g., the [[tribe (biology)|tribe]] [[Photinini]]) are perhaps better divided.
 
 
There seem to be two groups of subfamilies: one containing many [[Americas|American]] and some [[Eurasia]]n species in the Lampyrinae and Photurinae, and one, predominantly [[Asia]]n, made up from the other subfamilies. While the subfamilies as understood here are, in general, [[monophyletic]], there are still a few genera that need to be moved about for the subfamilies to accurately represent the [[evolution]]ary relationships among the fireflies.
 
 
The [[Rhagophthalmidae]] are a [[Phengodidae|glow worm]]-like lineage of [[Elateroidea]]. They have in the recent past usually been considered a distinct family, but it is still disputed as to whether this is correct. Indeed, they might be the only close relative of the puzzling firefly genus ''[[Pterotus]]'', which sometimes is placed in a [[monotypic]] subfamily.
 
 
The genus ''[[Phausis]]'', usually placed in the [[tribe (biology)|tribe]] [[Photinini]] of the Lampyrinae, might represent another rather distinct lineage instead.
 
 
==References==
 
{{reflist}}
 
 
==Further reading==
 
<!-- MolPhylEvol45:22. -->
 
*{{cite journal |last=Branham |first=M. A. |first2=J. W. |last2=Wenzel |year=2003 |title=The origin of photic behavior and the evolution of sexual communication in fireflies (Coleoptera: Lampyridae) |journal=[[Cladistics (journal)|Cladistics]] |volume=19 |issue=1 |pages=1–22 |doi=10.1111/j.1096-0031.2003.tb00404.x}}
 
*{{cite journal |last=Lewis |first=S. M. |first2=C. K. |last2=Cratsley |year=2008 |title=Flash signal evolution, mate choice, and predation in fireflies |journal=[[Annual Review of Entomology]] |volume=53 |issue= |pages=293–321 |doi=10.1146/annurev.ento.53.103106.093346}}
 
*{{cite paper |last=Stous |first=Hollend |year=1997 |title=A review of predation in ''Photuris'', and its effects on the evolution of flash signaling in other New World fireflies |url=http://www.colostate.edu/Depts/Entomology/courses/en507/papers_1997/stous.html }}
 
<!--* {{ITIS|ID=113835|taxon=Lampyridae|date=30 April|year=2006}} [subfamily list is erroneous, see AmMusNovit3600] -->
 
 
==External links==
 
{{wikiquote|Fireflies}}
 
{{wiktionary|firefly}}
 
{{Commons category|Lampyridae}}
 
* [http://www.firefliesandglow-worms.co.uk An introduction to European fireflies and glow-worms]
 
* [http://www.firefly.org Firefly.org – Firefly & Lightning Bug Facts, Pictures, Information About Firefly Insect Disappearance]
 
* [http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XMTY5OTk0MTc2.html Firefly simulating robot, China]
 
* http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/Taxonomy/Browser/wwwtax.cgi
 
* [http://www.ias.ac.in/resonance/Sept2002/pdf/Sept2002p49-55.pdf Lightning Bugs]
 
* [http://quit007.deviantart.com/gallery/#Fireflies Fireflies, long-term exposures, Germany]
 
* [https://www.mos.org/fireflywatch/understanding_fireflies Museum of Science, Boston – Understanding Fireflies]
 
* [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WHYfVEStWtE Video of a firefly larva in Austria]
 
* [http://www.FireflyExperience.org FireflyExperience.org – Luminous Photography and Videos of Fireflies & Lightning Bugs]
 
 
{{Coleoptera|4}}
 
 
[[Category:Bioluminescent organisms]]
 
[[Category:Lampyridae| ]]
 
[[Category:Night]]
 
[[Category:Insect families]]
 
 
{{Link GA|ar}}
 
Reason: ANN scored at 0.968366
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Reporter: Mark (anonymous)
Date: Thursday, the 12th of May 2016 at 12:41:59 AM
Status: Reported
Thursday, the 12th of May 2016 at 12:41:59 AM #104299
Mark (anonymous)

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