Wednesday, July 24, 2019


Image result for firefly

Environmental & Science Education
Art and Environment
Edward Hessler

Photographer Richard Sherman was in eastern Iowa during late June and early July--"firefly season."  He made several short time lapse videos and firefly closeups in local corn and soybean fields.

When I was a kid fireflies were mostly known as "lightning bugs," a very appropriate name here because Sherman's videos include some incredible lightning storms (more than 100 miles from where he was shooting ). And on the 4th of July he not only shot fireflies, and a lightning storm, but also fireworks in the same time lapse. And as a bonus, a white moggie is seen sitting in one of the fields.

The close-up photographs are lovely too, so scroll down to the bottom. 

If you've not seen a firefly (Photuris lucieresens) close-up take a look at the Wiki entry which also includes a link on how these insects make light, light known as cold light since it is chemical. The process has one of those words to roll of the tongue: bioluminescence.  The chemistry and behavior have been well studied, e.g., see here.

For more about fireflies here are 14 facts from Smithsonian.

Poet Robert Frost wrote a lovely poem about fireflies, one not to be missed.

h/t Molly who writes "(I) still have just a few more years in our suburban back yard...which feels like such a gift."

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