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Belted firefly

Photuris cinctipennis
Firefly icon. (Natasha Sinegina, CC-BY-4.0 /
U.S. State
Life History

Activity Period and Flash Signal

Adults are active in June and July and give off single yellow-green flashes at uncertain intervals.


The belted firefly has a very small range in Maryland and Delaware, and it appears to be quite rare. Despite extensive survey efforts and examination of museum collections, it has been documented from only five counties.

Habitat Associations

The belted firefly is found in moist lowland areas in hardwood forests and isolated freshwater forested ephemeral wetlands of the mid-Atlantic coast.

Conservation Status
  • IUCN Red List status: Endangered
  • NatureServe status: G1G2—Imperiled, S4—Apparently Secure (Delaware), SNR—State Not Ranked (Maryland)
  • U.S. Endangered Species Act status: Not listed

This species is threatened by habitat loss and degradation due to urban development and sea level rise.

Conservation Needs
  • We need to know more about the distribution of this species. Please check out the Firefly Atlas to help us track and conserve this threatened firefly.
  • Turn off your outdoor lights at night so the lights of this firefly aren’t diminished by light pollution. You can read more about firefly-friendly lighting in our fact sheet.
  • Avoid pesticide use, which could harm this firefly, its habitat, or its prey.
  • More research on population size and trend, habitats and ecology, and threats is needed for this species.
Prepared By

Candace Fallon, The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, based on the IUCN Red List assessment