Firefly Reports from Florida
Selected by Donald Ray Burger
Attorney at Law

To submit your own report email
Please include your city/town and state, and the date of your sighting. Include as many details as you can, such as numbers of fireflies, location (rural/city/wooded area, etc), temperature, time, and so on. Thanks for helping with this project.

Below are reports from Florida, listed in date order, alphabetically by city.

Boca Raton:

May 11, 2012: A reader reports: On May 4, 2012 in Boca Raton, Florida, located in Palm Beach County. North east section of Whyman Park. Highly vegetated area around 100ft from ICW. There were around 20. They were flashing. Temperature was between 70-80 degree F. It was around 11:00 PM.


May 3, 1999: A reader reports: On May 3rd we saw fireflies in Bristol, Florida. We were walking along a dirt road with heavy bushes and some trees on both sides and they were everywhere! Tons of them. It looked like Christmas lights. It has been very cool and not too humid. It was just about 9pm, almost completely dark, but with just a little bit of light left in the sky. We noticed them in this spot last year, but I was not sure about the time of year.

Captiva Island:

May 13, 2011: Captiva Island, Florida 9:11 pm. Temperature about 75-78 degrees. Not that humid. A really nice night. Our house is on the bay but directly across the road is the beach. Our lot is wooded--dense vegetation on either side. Very dark at night, which allows us to see them flashing all over the backyard area. When trying to catch one they move a lot faster than they did when I was a little girl. Their lights also seem more of a green glow not the yellow that I remember as a kid. What a great night to remember one of my fondest memories of childhood ... Catching fireflies! Priceless!

Crystal River:

April 22, 2011: A reader writes: Crystal River, Florida, 2:35 am, 62.6 degrees F. Approximately 1 mile east of the Gulf of Mexico, backyard, approximately 100 feet from a heavily wooded area. I saw only one firefly but I have waited three years to see one on this property. Growing up in central Florida they were plentiful. I hope this means I will see more. This one was very close to a window hovering around a red and yellow hummingbird feeder filled with a mixture of 1.5 cups of sugar mixed with 4 cups of water - no coloring.


April 4, 2011: A reader writes: My wife and I were excited to see 6 fireflies from our back yard in DeLand, Florida, at about 2130 this evening (April 4, 2011). There are several acres of second-growth dry/upland forest, mostly oaks with some slash pines (with a palmetto/mixed-shrub understory) just on the other side of our back yard fence. We live in the Glenwood subdivision of NW DeLand, almost in DeLeon Springs. Hope the fireflies are in flight wherever you are.

Deleon Springs:

July 26, 2001: Isabel Cowdrey reports: We have seen fireflies seen in Deleon Springs, Florida! First time we have seen them in years. We have a small corner lot, with lots of plants and small and midsize trees, butterfly houses, lots of plants and a fish pond. We don't use pesticides. Security lights light up most of the area. On 7-25-01 we saw one in the backyard and three in front yard, just looking out the door.


June 8, 2011: Shawn Kendall writes: One firefly sighted at Enterprise, Florida, at approximately 9:00 pm. At my residence, deep in the swamp woods, but borders a canal on the northeast side of Lake Monroe. I'll keep watching for more!

Fort Clinch:

July 19, 2002: Mary Driggers writes: I would like to add my comments about seeing literally zillions of firefly's in two places, and why I think that I was seeing that many congregating together. The first place that I saw zillions of them, was at Fort Clinch, Florida, near Fernandina, Florida. We were camping, and it looked like someone had hooked up the little clear christmas lights in the forest. It appeared that there was a firefly every square inch! My theory as to why there were so many there, is that there were ten billion zillion "no see'um bugs" ... the kind that drives you crazy biting you and you can't see them! I figured that the firefly's may have been living off of these tiny bugs. Another place I have seen zillions of lightning bugs is near our lake in north central Florida. Someone cleared about an acre of land, and there was zillions of firefly's in the forest next to this cleared site, so my theory there was that the clearing of the tree's had run the bugs to the area next to the clearing. That might account for other areas around the country that might be close to the clearing or stripping of the forests and the spotting of numerous firefly's. It is quite a sight to behold when you see that many.

Fort Lauderdale:

May 6, 2012: A reader reports: I live in the middle of the city in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and I just saw a firefly while watering my garden. I have lived here for 44 years and I can't remember ever seeing one. We travel to North Carolina several times a year and one of the things that we always look forward to in the summer time is the Fireflies. Up there we have them every night in the summer. I could not believe my eyes when I saw this little guy all the way down here. It was about 8:45 pm. Sunset was around 8 pm.
May 25, 1999: A reader sends: We saw One firefly here in the forested part of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. I have lived here for thirteen years and have never seen one before tonight. It was about 11 pm and it flew around our yard. Just one. We also have had a fire going on in the Everglades this week and I wonder if it drove it to us by way of wind or if it was just forced out into the suburbs of South Florida.


April 22, 2004: A reader writes: Hi. Are you still taking these reports? I live in Gainesville, Florida. It is April 22, 2004, and 77 degrees. I saw what looked like a large firefly, 9:30 pm, flying just beneath the tree branches. It's flight pattern reminded me of a butterfly; the light regularly pulsed on and off and was bright. When it caught my attention, I first thought it was something else. I did not see any others. Seemed odd, it made me curious about fireflys, they see so rare anymore.
April 9, 2002: Maurice McReynolds writes: For the first time this year the fireflies are out. I noticed them a few minutes ago and wondered what they ate and if I could encourage them. So I hit the net to see what I could find. I found you, among other things. I live in Gainesville, Forida, The light conditions were dark of evening about an hour after sunset. there is very little artificial light in the immediate area. The nearest street light is about 200 feet away. There are a couple of dozen within a normal scan from left to right of an area 200 feet. They are hanging out in woods along a creek that runs along the back of our lot and trough the subdivision. The color of their light is more white than green. They blink rapidly and are lit very briefly. I first thought this was because they were young but the pattern remains the same until they disappear again. I will keep my eye open for them each night until they leave, they are a real treat to see and are quite the event in our back yard.


May 7, 2011: A reader reports: I just found your site when I googles fireflies in Florida. I am a native and had never seen a firefly in South Florida until yesterday evening (10 pm) and again tonight (around 9pm) in Hialeah, Florida. Similar to the report from the person on Key Biscayne, these have 2 lights, very bright and green, above the wings. I have never seen a similar lightening bug and these were longer (+1.25 in) than those I am familiar with from the mid-Atlantic and Northeast. The insect body was longer and thinner but the coloring of the body and wings and the wing structure and movement - slow and drifting - were very typical. Thanks very much for the site.


May 11, 2005: A reader notes: I live in
Hilliard, Florida, and have a 40 acre farm mostly woodlands. Happy to say that the fireflies are thriving well here at Country Day Castle and Stable. We offer all kinds of activities here and one thing for sure, you will see plenty of fireflies starting April through October. Check us out at


June 16, 2005: A reader writes: Hey. I had quite a few fireflies flyin around 2 weeks ago in my back yard. I live in Hollywood, Florida, in an urban setting. Just wanted to let you know. We have a golf coarse behind the house and some watery area. They tease me when I try and catch them. They're hard to get and I don't wanna do any damage to them so I try and just sit back and watch them do their thing. I know what you're talking about with the levels going down. I'm only 20 and even 10 years ago I remember places at night being swarmed with em. Now only the occasional few will grace the area if we're lucky. I'm sure global warming and the low water levels can contribute to their decline. As they can be contributed to the decline of many species around here, along with over-development and apathy among the people. Anyhow, I was wondering if you're aware of any good spots around South Florida where one might be able to do some firefly watching, maybe take some photographs or just play around. Anyhow, I'd love to know. Thanks for the great info on the website. Good luck with your research. I'd love to stay updated on how our populations down south are doin! Take care.


April 11, 2011: A reader sends from Homosassa, Florida: Hello: I stumbled upon your site when I was wondering about fireflies on the nature coast of Florida, Homosassa to be exact. We just moved to this area and I was so excited tonight to see a firefly hanging around my sliding glass door. I turned off my lights and looked out into a wooded area by my house and saw lots and lots of them! Very cool. We just moved here from East Texas and I never saw them there. I grew up in the Florida Everglades and never recall seeing them there, either. So, being a good mom, I got my kids ot of bed so my boys cold see their first ever firefly. Anyway, if you're still keeping up with your site, I thought you'd enjoy it.

Indian Rocks Beach:

May 7, 2012: A reader notes: I saw your posts online when doing a search for lightning bugs in Florida. I saw a lightning bug in Indian Rocks Beach, Florida, on Saturday night May 5, 2012. This was the most unusual thing I have ever seen. I initially saw a bright concentrated light outside my stained glass door. My initial thought was that someone was directing a laser stick at my door. I quickly opened the door and saw that it was in fact a lightning bug or fire fly of some sort. It was very similar in size to a northern lightning bug that you would find around the Philadelphia area. The main astonishing difference was that this lightning bug was a bright fluorescent green. I wanted to try and catch it but I didn't want to take a chance of injuring it. I have been out last night and earlier tonight to see if I could duplicate this sighting. I sure hope I am not the only one who has seen a similar bug. I am not an entomologist but I am 100% sure of what I saw.


May 11, 2012: A reader reports: On March 12, 2012, in Jupiter, Florida, located in Palm Beach County. They were between the road way and beach in highly vegetated area north of Juno Pier. There were over 50. They were flashing. Temperature was between 70-80 degrees F. It was around 10:00 PM.

Key Biscayne:

June 5, 2010: Darin Phillips : After a storm blew through the island tonight on Key Biscayne, Florida, we finally saw our first firefly. It had two glowing green spots on each side above the wings instead of a single large glowing underbelly. Large ants on our porch were eating another one that had died. We have lived in this condo near the end of the island for 2.5 years and this was the first time we have seen one. However, we have been unable to find out what species it is.


June 27, 2011: A reader writes: It was about 1:40 am on June 26 in Kissimmee, Florida. My girlfriend and I were in front of our home when she first just spotted a single firefly. I quickly turned around and saw it light up and fly away over our house heading northwest.


April 2, 2006: A reader reports: Today, April 2nd, 2006 I saw a firefly in the front yard of my home, located on the north side of Lakeland, Florida, which is in Central Florida. I live in a suburb area on the north side of Lake Gibson. It was around 9:00 p.m. and the temperature was around 70 degrees. It has not rained here in several days and I had the sprinkler running. I did not see any others, just the one.


June 1, 2003: A reader notes: I moved here from North Carolina and had given up on seeing them again (they were plentiful in the summer in Raleigh NC) but I did see a sparse few here recently where I live in Melrose, Florida. Since I was not aware of your website until now I cannot give you any exacts other than that it was in March or April of 2003. They were hard to spot and didn't come at night but right around dusk. I also live in a very rural wooded area. I will keep on the lookout and keep you informed.


May 6, 2011: A reader reports: Don't know if you are still tracking their whereabout but here is: Miami, Florida, 33155 -tropical park area. I saw a few fireflies in our neighborhood tonight. My husband caught one for my daughter and we were able to put in a glass jar to examine it for a few minutes. Same as the one seen on Key Biscayne on June 5 2010. It has two green dots one of each side at the base of its head or above the wings. The body is black or dark brown and elongated. It's the first time I have seen those here.
October 4, 2000: A reader writes: In the late fifties/early sixties, I was growing up in a rural area outside Miami, Florida. When twilight arrived we used to turn off all the television and all the lights in the house, then sit in front of the plate glass windows overlooking some undeveloped land. Soon we would see the first firefly. That sighting was quickly followed by many more fireflies. They were easy to catch, but we always let them go. Those were wonderful evenings. Now I leave in Roswell, Georgia, which is just north of Atlanta. In the last few years I have seen only a few fireflies. I really miss them. I was searching to find a way to attract fireflies to our backyard. We have a butterfly bush that really works wonders in attracting butterflies. If you ever discover a source raising or attracting fireflies, just let me know...I'd love to try to encourage them to live in our neighborhood. Sounds like others are looking for a source too...maybe this is a good business opportunity for someone!


April 11, 2006: Diane Pallot reports: I live in a small town near Titusville Florida called Mims, Florida. In my development I live adjacent to a wooded common area; however, that is not where the fireflies are. They used to be across the street in two vacant lots. The lots were wooded and lots of long wild grass covering most of the ground. The first year I spotted them was 1996. I never saw anything as beautiful. The entire wooded lots were lit up with what seemed to be thousands of fireflies. It looked as other people have described as small Christmas lights twinkling on the ground. Green in color, they would blink just after dark and kept on until 10:00 or 11:00 p.m. My block is a mile long with other woods, but the fireflies seem to be in primarily one spot on my block. As the years have past the two lots have been developed. One neighbor left most of his woods; the other (this is where they mostly were) was clear cut. I told the owner of the land that he ruin a beautiful thing. Now I see them in my backyard which also has the underlying grass . I believe this grass may have something to do with their survival. There is very little lawn on my 1 acre, mostly natural woods. We have screech owls, turkeys, hogs, raccoons, armadillos, opossums, flying squirrels, and gray squirrels….behind my backyard woods is my neighbors woods so there is plenty of area for our fireflies to court one another. They always come at the same time every year, the first week in April and stay for two or three weeks. It is now the 11th of April and I can see them already starting to disappear. I don’t believe I will ever see thousands as I did in the past near my property but I am glad that they did not disappear all together. There is still some across the street where the neighbor who kept his woods lives. However they are just not as many. I do not spray any pesticides on my lawn or any fertilizer except Milorganite. This year we are having a drought so I do not know how this will affect their breeding. I feel blessed to have them.

Myakka City:

October 15, 2012: A reader notes: We have fireflies on and off from late spring through early fall. Just tonight I observed a dozen or so out in the front yard (5 acres really) here in Central Florida. We live in north Myakka City, Florida, in the middle of an old orange grove. Thank you for keeping records; it seems to us they are regaining population rather than being in decline. Thank you


March 17, 2006: Doris E. Sinclair notes: I am happy to report that here in Naples, Forida, which is in southwest Florida, we have a fine supply of fireflies and have been observing them for at least the past 5 years. And their numbers appear to be increasing. We live in a more rural area on 5 acres of our own, plus the 5 acre tracts on either side of us are not developed. Our fireflies seem to prefer the woods. The first one was sighted at the end of February and since then they seem to be more plentiful each night. It is pure joy to walk in the woods with them twinkling. Thanks for providing a venue where this can be shared!


April 15, 2011: I was walking on a nature trail in North Port, Florida, and back into the woods, where there is a ton of bushes and along a little canal I spotted a firefly at about 8:30 pm. As I kept walking through the trail I came to a bit of open field around 9 pm and counted at least 10 other fireflies flickering all around me. It was probably 75 degrees out, no clouds, just moon light and they stayed above head level. I've spotted them before in Sarasota, Florida a couple years ago and also in Englewood Florida, but I haven't seen them in a great while until tonight.

Northwest Florida Panhandle:

June 7, 2005: A reader writes: I haven't seen any fireflies in my Northwest Florida Panhandle yard in a few years. This past weekend I went home to the Tennessee Valley - Quad Cities area of northwest Alabama , and saw dozens of fireflies each night at my father's house, near where I saw them when growing up. On the last night, I secured a gallon jug, complete with air holes punched in metal cap and captured by hand (only) at least 16 (maybe two dozen) fireflies. I let them "overnight" in the garage outside. The next morning, a couple of them looked dead and like they were on their backs. Nevertheless, I decided to take them home (in the floorboard of the car - not the hot trunk!). After a five hour drive home, I immediately 'dumped' them in a back corner of our acre lot near some trees/shrubs just outside our butterfly/hummingbird garden. They all seemed alive, and a couple took flight. I don't know what I expected but I have been more than rewarded thus far. That first night, near dusk, I watched where I had 'dumped' them, and lo and behold, flickers appeared and I counted at least a dozen separate fireflies. They had stayed in the area, dormant I presume in the afternoon, and now began their area tours. They fanned out across my backyard, eventually over my house and six foot fence into neighborhood yards and highways. After about 45 minutes, there was not a single flicker left in my yard. I supposed that was the end of it, and hoped they would live and survive in our neighborhood, despite bats, frogs, and windshields of vehicles! But, nevertheless, the second night at dusk, I again stood vigil. Sure enough, as I watched several fireflies gradually lit up (maybe 8 - 10 separate ones) and again scouted out my back yard and soon were out on the neighborhood, with not a flicker remaining in my back yard after about 45 minutes. Tonight is the third night and I just came in, and there were at least 6-7 fireflies who had returned "home" to the back corner of my lot last night. I will keep watching each night and see how many return each day. I hope that they have had time to lay eggs for larva for next year. Now, I suppose everyone would have told me that I am crazy to try this experiment, and no one is more surprised than me that it has lasted three nights so far. It has been very entertaining and I hope to 're-introduce' fireflies to my yard and neighborhood. I obviously can't say "it worked" yet, nor further that it might work for you, but I have had a ton of fun (like I was a little kid again) welcoming my friends back home each night at dusk, and bidding them safe voyage as they head out exploring my neighborhood. It has already been well worth the trouble and time it took to arrange the experiment.


July 3, 2000: A reader reports: We have lived in North Central Florida near Ocala, Florida all our 38 years and we grew up catching fireflies. We have not seen fireflies in our area for years and have wondered what happened to them. We would like to see fireflies in our area as they fascinate our children. We recently vacationed (end of June) in central New Jersey and the fireflies were plentiful. We also saw fireflies in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee two years ago but there were only a few. If you find a way to reintroduce fireflies to your area please let us know. Thanks.
August 7, 2000: A reader writes: I saw your site regarding fire flies while browsing, have you been able to locate a source for obtaining fire flies ? I live in Orlando, Florida, and have seen fire flies in Ocala, Florida, which is about 80 miles North West of Orlando, also while visiting a friend in Atlanta. We would love to try and populate the greater Orlando area. Thanks !

Orange City:

September 9, 2000: Jim Kelly reports: We recently moved from an area where fireflies appeared each spring. For about 3 to 4 weeks, usually in March, we would have a very large amount in our yard. There were so many we considered it somewhat spectacular and many visitors to our home would comment on them. We saw them every year during our residence there from 1989 to 1999. The location was Orange City, Florida, in Southwest Volusia County. The area is within 100 miles of the Ocala forest. It is a rural location. An area of thick brush and few houses. All 21 blocks of the neighborhood were on dirt roads. Turkey oaks were the predominate tree type and their large leaves covered the ground. In fact I would weed eat the wooded areas surrounding our yard to keep the green vegetation down and leave the leaves on the ground to form a mat of mulch. Based on the information I have read on your site, I would guess this provided a good habitat for the fireflies. In the ten years we lived there I can only remember the county spraying for mosquitos a few times. I hope this information helps.


July 17, 2000: Linda Motyka notes: My family and I used to visit relatives in southwest Tennessee every summer and that's where I saw my first firefly. We called them lightning bugs back then. Two nights ago I was sitting on my patio here in Orlando, Florida about 10:30 p.m. and spotted 3 of them. I took it as a good omen. My boyfriend had just proposed. And I said. "yes."


April 30, 2013: A reader notes: This is for Pace, Florida. We moved here in the summer of 2005, and I saw four fireflies; never had seen them before out west. It was so cool to see them and was looking forward to seeing them again. Well I never saw them again until tonight, 30 April, 2013. I saw a couple across the street and there may be more. It's a bit breezy out and 76 degrees. They blink twice with a white color and then about 30 second later they blink again, but sometimes 50 feet away. Still so cool I hope they stay around.

Palm Bay:

April 15, 2010: a reader reports: I was am excited. I had gone out back to take my dogs out at about 8:36 pm for their last potty before bed, and there it was: a firefly. I followed it through our yard and tried to catch it, but was unable to. We live in Palm Bay, Florida. I just wanted to let you know.

Panama City:

July 11, 2002: A reader writes: I too remember seeing "Lightning Bugs" in the thousands as a child. I've often wondered why I never see them anymore. On July 9th my children saw one for the first time while we were camping at St. Andrews State Park in Panama City, Florida. The beetle was alone flying along the saw grass in a salt water lagoon. It gave us loads to talk about as my wife and I shared stories of years past with our kids.


June 4, 2010: a reader reports: I was sitting in my I saw a firefly, I am from Bethlehem , PA and I would see them all the time growing up and miss them. My husband had told me when he came from work last night that they do not exist here. But that was not the best part, we were sitting in our living room at around 10:00 pm my husband looked down at the floor, and there was a firefly WALKING on our floor, lighting up! To me, it was almost surreal. My husband picked it up and set it free outside. This was the first time (and I have been living in Florida for 17 years), that I have ever seen one, let alone one walking in our living room. Needless to say, my husband is a believer now. I am from Plantation, Florida. The term that best described seeing it was MAGIC. Also, we live in the acres, so we are on an acre of land with surrounding trees and bushes and are about 10 minutes away from the everglades.

Ponte Vedra Beach:

May 12, 2005: Claudia Springer writes: Hi. I live in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, and haven't seen fireflies here in over 10 years. I've been told it was the chemicals from the golf courses that are creating a problem for fireflies. The past week, however, I have seen fireflies in my back yard again! For the most part, the weather has been beautiful each night of the sighting, about 68 degrees, clear as a bell, 8:30 pm. Same scenario each night. I live in a suburban neighborhood, but my yard is landscaped with mature viburnum, ptysporum, and lots of honeysuckle - however, as before (nearly 10 years ago), the fireflies seem to like the viburnum. It seems unusual that they should be seen this early in the year and also with our weather so unusually cool right now. Even as a kid I remember loads of fireflies in July, and especially after a rain. I've only seen two at the most but before dusk today (May 12), I watered the yard in hopes that tonight's sighting would have more fireflies. Yep, I was right! Same time: 8:30 pm, about 68 degrees, clear, saw 5 fireflies. Hope this helps.


May 17, 2012: A reader notes: This report is from Seminole, Florida. At 9:00 P.M. right off the backwater of Long Bayou we saw tons of fireflies as we walked back through the mangroves from a fishing adventure. We were amazed to see fireflies in Seminole! Temperature was around 78 F. This was actually the second time we had seen them, we saw them about two weeks ago around the same time. There were literally hundreds of them.

South Florida:

August 5, 2000: A reader writes: I saw a firefly on July 31st in South Florida, between Ft. Lauderdale and Palm Beach. There was only one. It was dusk, right before real darkness...just a tiny bit of light hanging on. I live in a suburban neighborhood..houses, gardens, lawns etc. and it occurred to me that I hadn't seen one in years. So I mailed everyone in my address book asking if they see fireflies where they live and if, like me,they have noticed a great decline in their numbers over the years. I got answers from many places. They have been seen in North Carolina, on Long Island, NY and Austin Texas. My friends in Mass. report very few or none as do upstate New York and Marin County, Ca. (north of San Francisco). Everyone agrees that they see far fewer then they did in the past. Many asked me where they have gone. I've tried to learn and that is how I found your website. I'd like to know too. You asked for theories...Here's mine: The aliens took them. They traveled thousands of light years, explored our planet and found fireflies to be the one thing we have worth having. They couldn't figure out how fireflies make cold light either. If you ever get a definitive answer, please let me know. I applaud your efforts. It's a good thing you're doing.
St. Augustine:

May 4, 2008: Michale Worley reports: We're in a rural area south of St Augustine, Florida. Approximately 2000 hours with a temperature of around 77F. I noticed one firefly toward the tops of a stand of oak trees next to our house. Thought I was seeing things as we have been in Florida since 1997 and I have never seen one firefly. After a bit of observing, several more showed up. I would say that in total there were at least a half dozen fireflies. My wife also witnessed the sightings. It was a real treat for me, as I have not seen any fireflies since 1977 in New Jersey.
St. Joe:

May 7, 2012: A reader writes: From April 26 to 28, 2012, we were camping at St. Joseph Peninsula State Park in Port St. Joe, Florida. state park. The weather was warm, but pleasant, with high 70s to low 80s. We were in campsite that backed up to vegetation leading over to sand dunes toward the beachside. There were many fireflies wandering back and forth all three nights. It was a great surprise. Like our own little light show. What a peaceful sight, reminding me of my youth!


June 18, 2011: Vicki writes: I'm currently in Tallahasse, Florida, and we went out looking for fireflies tonight. We found a few flying high in night sky in very wooded areas. The time was around 9 pm. The temperature was about 83 degrees. Clear sky. Humidity is at 68%. We were not able to catch any, but enjoyed watching them fly about the trees. The best part was that my daughter got to experience fireflies for the first time ... She loved every minute!
May 7, 2003: Mary Schaad notes: I was watching the fireflies in my back yard last evening. Seems to me there are a few more this year than last and earlier too. Our neighbor does not have a porch light burning and I noticed the insects congregate in her yard more than ours; also they fly very high into the tops of the trees. We live inner city but amongst lots of trees in Tallahassee, Florida. We have four large butterfly bushes in the back yard. I was looking up information on what I can do to provide a stable environment for the fireflies to thrive in. There is something so peaceful and romantic about seeing them!


Randy Constan, alias "Peter Pan" reports: I had to run to my computer to type "fireflies in Florida" into Google! I've been in Tampa since 1995, after living most of my life in New York. I'd never seen any fireflies here in Tampa, Florida, nor heard of anyone seeing a single one. Then, tonight, September 24, 2009, around 10 PM, cluttered around a big "floating mat" island in a pond bordering my backyard, hundreds of them! Really fast blinking ones too, like little electronic LED flashers! They'd flash about 3-4 flashes per second, about 7 or 8 flashes in a row, then pause. The whole mass of them looked really magical! I can't help wonder if there's some greater meaning, and all those other fun things to think about. :-) In any case, VERY KEWL!!!!

March 20, 2006: A reader reports: I live in Wellington, Florida, which is in Palm Beach County. I have seen hundreds of fireflies in the past few days behind my house. We live on a natural preserve and there is some water separating our house from the preserve. It hasn't rained in awhile, but the nights have been really nice and in the 60's, and there isn't much humidity now. Mostly all of the fireflies stay in the preserve, but a few show up in my yard. By the way, it's March 20th, the first day of Spring!

Wesley Chapel:
August 16, 2010: Gloria Valentine writes: I have had fireflies around my home in Wesley Chapel, Florida, which is just north of Tampa in Pasco County, for the last 2 months (mid-June to now, mid-August, 2010). They are not numerous, but they shine with a quick, bright white light. My yard has a pond with lots of woods behind it, and that's where they like to hang out. I am originally from Maryland and am accustomed to seeing many fireflies in the summer. I have been in Florida for almost five years and have never seen any here until recently. These fireflies blink rapidly, faster than the ones up North, and their light is brighter and white rather than yellowish. The weather here has not been anything out of the ordinary; hot, humid days with thunderstorms/showers in the afternoons.
April 26, 2010: A reader notes: Last night was the night of a wicked storm, which turned out lightning and wind in extraordinary amounts – the lightning alone being called “historical.” It was actually so bad it was like a strobe light was going off ‘outside.’ We live in Wesley Chapel, Florida, and this occurred on 4/26 in the wee hours (storm started around 7:30 on 4/25) – it should go down as worse than “No Name Storm of ’93’(?)”) I can’t tell you for sure the temperature, but would have been somewhere in the 70s, at least around the time the bug was noticed. Anyway, after an explosive lightning strike, we were unable to sleep and got up to sit on the couch to wait the worst out (about 12pm) and my husband noticed a lightning but on the ceiling just behind us (inside the house). I have been in Florida since late 70s and don’t recall seeing any since before then, when I lived in Ohio. I read a book about them purporting them in New Orleans at the time of Katrina, but I don’t know if that is true or not. If so, perhaps there was something to do with that that moved them back (perhaps with the amount of people who came to Florida after Katrina – and brought them with them - or through some other atmospheric conditions). My husband is a truck driver, and I asked him if he had been anywhere where there were lightning bugs (in the event he somehow “brought a bug home”), but he said it isn’t time yet in the northern areas (i.e. Chicago) where he was, and he hadn’t seen any. I don’t recollect when they used to start, only – like he said – they seem to be more of a summertime bug. In any event, we have had more rainfall this winter and spring than usual, and then this terrible storm, which went across the Gulf Coast, to this wonderful bug in our living room. I don’t know what to make of it. It would be nice if they were coming back – of course preferably in their own environment. Is there any hope that it’s not just limited to strange sightings or certain habitats?

May 9, 2003: A reader writes: We live in Weston, Florida, (Broward County) Our backyard is filled with fireflies. We live on a lake, have lots of flowers and butterfly gardens, and use no pesticides. It's really nice to see them out there.

May 1, 2006: Diane Pallot reports: I live in a small town near Titusville Florida called Mims, Florida. I sent in a firefly report on April 11 about fireflies in Mims, Florida. I have made a new discovery in Yankeetown, Florida. We have a cottage over there and we have discovered them in some adjacent woods. They seem to like areas with hardwood trees and low lying shrubs and grass. Glad they are there as well.

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