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is actually not a fly. It is a beetle.
On the subject of Firefly,
there are also instances of mistaken identities. Common misnomer are that
they are considered as falling within the same genetic group with insects
that produces light and those that looks like Firefly Beetle. First, glow
worms that are not larvae of Firefly, then there is another insect that
mimic the firefly but without light source.
Some facts about the Kuala
Species found in Kuala Selangor.
In Sungei Selangor area, there
is this stretch with high concentration of a single species, the
Pteroptyx tener - one of those that practices synchronized
flashing. In other parts of the river,
more species like
Pteroptyx sp. were
found co-habiting with these beetle.
|This beetle [Firefly] in the
class of Insecta, falls under the main order of Coleoptera,
then in the family of Lampyridae
and finally the various species, sub-species and variants. Now, there are about
2000 identified types worldwide.
In Malaysia, there are about 29 identified species. These beetles are well
distributed in the cool highlands and the low wetlands, estuary belts.
up - Log on to
|A picture of
Any reasons why
the beetle needs the lamp? What do they feed on?
These Beetles needs damp grassy
wetlands that support large varieties of other insects, particularly
snails. Then the adults associate themselves with large trees that are
filled with rich foliages. Such environments can be equated with those
seen in estuaries in the lowlands, valleys and gullies of the forested
More example is that Firefly
stays on the banks of river and canals. Stretches with dry land
coupled with soft clay. Mangrove forest and where intertidal
water washes the bank. Such situations are the most conducive.
female lays their
eggs in the soil.
The Larvae tapers on both
ends with small head -the length lesser than it width, lives
among the debris's of the wooded wetland floor, wet places or
under barks of trees.
breeding ground supports a food chain of worms and snails. The
carnivorous larvae will not go hungry.
mostly done in the larvae stage as the adult are voracious [do not
feed] Perhaps that could also account for the syndrome where the
larvae stage extends over months while the adult are short lived.
Most adult fireflies are
found on grass blades by day.
will remain there up till an hour before dusk .
While females of many species of Fireflies are wingless and flashes
from the ground, those in Kuala Selangor in Malaysia are equipped to
fly and flashes from their perching position among the foliages.
A picture of the
This species seen in the
Selangor River belongs to the group that also practice synchronized or
rhythmic flashing. They are seen in the Indian Continent and eastwards,
down to South east up to the Philippines and New Guinea.
At dusk, the beetles
emerge from their grassland home and adjoin to their nocturnal domain.
This is their gathering
points and also that resulted in the scene of the display tree.
What type of tree is
attracts or most preferred by Fireflies?
All types of tree. But Mangrove
trees of all species, have the highest density of beetles' gathering. Among
them one particular species seems to be the most proffered.
Food for the
This is the
Sonneratia caseolaris flower in bloom. The flower is pollinated by
nocturnal bats. As mentioned earlier, adult Fireflies do not feed that
much. Then why the largest gathering is seen on this tree.
leaves for the tree are well perforated - a sign that some insects
is draining of its saps
mysteries that I
have not found the answer.
as perceived by Wanderbug
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Watching Fireflies in Malaysia