Firefly Reports from Indiana
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 Indiana, listed in date order, alphabetically by city.

Fort Wayne:

August 6, 2000: A reader writes: Saw an article in the syndicated 'Access' insert in today's Denver Post. I've always been fascinated by fireflies since I was a small boy growing up in Wisconsin in the 40's and 50's. Except that there were no fireflies in my hometown, Ft. Atkinson, WI. The first time I saw them was a family visit to relatives living in Ft. Wayne, Indiana. This was probably in '49 or '50. The lack of fireflies in my hometown has changed, however. I spent the last two weeks in July visiting my sisters and their families. While there, in Ft. Atkinson, WI. , I was very excited to see fireflies once again. (We have no fireflies here in the Denver area.) I saw them both in the city (a town of about 10,000) and in a rural area. In both areas, it was what I would call dusk. It was getting dark, but not dark enough for me to get a time-exposure photograph. I waited for darker conditions, but by that time the fireflies were gone. Both rural/city sighting locations were on a grass lawn near (and away from) a house. I saw, perhaps, a dozen fireflies at each location. Good luck in your endeavors. Hope that the Houston firefly population increases. Send any extras up here.


June 23, 2002: A reader notes: I am a native of California but I have spent two summers in Indiana. I had never seen fireflies until I moved here to work. I am so fascinated by them since they are not found in the dry west. I can tell you for sure that they are plentiful on very warm and humid nights. Today was our first 90 degree day and it is very humid. This is the first night I have seen them this year. I know they are always going to be seen in large numbers on our most humid nights here in Indianapolis, Indiana. I see them mostly in the trees and thick vegetation of back yards. I hope this helps you with your study.


August 7, 2000:A reader notes: Just read about your Website in the Sunday Daily News (Los Angeles, CA) on August 6th, 2000. Thought I would let you know that while visiting my aunt in Lafayette, Indiana, from July 7th through July 19th this past month, I observed many of the little guys in her back yard on the several nights I actually looked outside to see if there happened to be any flying around. Had I known there was someone wanting to know details of the sightings, I would have tried to be more scientific in my survey. The area of the several sighting was an unfenced back yard with a grass lawn where the blades had not been mown so short that it might be considered a "neatly manicured" lawn. There is a large tree in the neighbors' back yard but only chain link fencing around it, so the entire area is fairly open, though not highly lighted. The thermometer was generally in the middle to high eighties during the day, with some rain on about three nights during my stay. I considered it to be fairly humid--at least it was considerably more so than the humidity I had experienced before leaving my residence in So. California to make the trip to my home state. As I was born and raised in this town for some of my childhood years, I spent many evenings with jar and lid punched for air openings, catching "lightning bugs" and still have a certain fascination with being able to find them out and about at night. I plan to read your entire "log" and think your intentions are to be applauded, but unfortunately, I have no thoughts on how you might restore the flying light bulbs to your area. Good luck on your project!


July 19, 2002: A reader notes: I live near Logansport, Indiana, in a wooded area and the fireflies are out every evening. I started seeing them a few weeks ago. Before I moved here, I lived in the middle of farm country with a cornfield in front of the house. Every evening in the summer I would sit on the front porch and watch the fireflies in swarms as they rose out of the corn. Perhaps they like to eat corn.

Northeast Indiana:

June 29, 1999: a reader reports: We are in Northeast Indiana. We have large numbers of fireflies. They are here from late June until? They are still here now. We do have mosquito spraying. We are on a lake. They are truly interesting to watch. I do not necessarily think that climate has anything to do with them. But maybe. We spend a great deal of time in California and have not seen fireflies there.

Rural Indiana:

July 24, 2001: A reader reports: My mother's property in rural Indiana always had a large population of fireflies in evidence during the summer months when I was a child. In the last four or five years there was a noticeable decline in the number of them that you could see on an average evening. However, in just the last two or so years, the trend seems to have reversed and the population seems to have recovered. The local farmers have discontinued the use of some of the pesticides and/or herbicides that they had been using in the past few years in the immediate area. I can't help but think that either the herbicides were killing off a major food source or the pesticides were doing the same, or possibly killing the fireflies or their larva directly. Anyway, she claims that since she noticed them spraying the crops much less in her area the population of fireflies is almost back to its original levels.

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