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Gila southwest spring firefly

Bicellonycha wickershamorum piceum
Firefly icon. (Natasha Sinegina, CC-BY-4.0 / https://creazilla.com/nodes/2473-firefly-silhouette.)
U.S. State
Arizona
Life History

Activity Period and Flash Signal

Adults are active at dusk from early to mid-June. Males and females communicate using a green flash/answer routine.

Distribution

This subspecies has only been reported from its type locality near Morenci, Arizona.

Habitat Associations

Because this subspecies has only been reported from a single site, not much is known about its habitat associations. However, like its parent species, B. wickershamorum, it is likely a riparian desert specialist. The type locality where this subspecies has been found is located in a seepage area within a floodplain.

Conservation Status
  • IUCN Red List status: Endangered
  • NatureServe status: Not assessed
  • U.S. Endangered Species Act status: Not listed
Threats

The Gila Southwest spring firefly is threatened by habitat degradation and loss due to mining, trampling by cattle, and modification for pasturing and agriculture, in addition to flooding and light pollution.

Conservation Needs
  • Surveys are needed to determine whether this subspecies remains extant at the type locality and if additional populations occur in the area.
  • Because flashing firefly species are somewhat of a rarity in the Southwest, consider reporting any sightings you have to iNaturalist, or consider participating in Firefly Watch!
  • 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

USA