Skip to main content
x

Sky island firefly

Photuris flavicollis
Firefly icon. (Natasha Sinegina, CC-BY-4.0 / https://creazilla.com/nodes/2473-firefly-silhouette.)
U.S. State
Texas
Life History

Activity Period and Flash Signal

Adults of this species are active from June to early August. Although the flash pattern has not been observed, males probably emit a continuous series of very short flashes at least once a second, similar to other Photuris fireflies.

Distribution

This firefly is endemic to the Davis Mountains and surrounding mountain ranges in West Texas.

Habitat Associations

The sky island firefly, so named for the unique place in Texas that harbors this species, is associated with spring complexes in remote mountainous areas of western Texas.

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

The major threat to this species is habitat disturbance due to development for oil and gas extraction, light pollution, and drought.

Conservation Needs
  • We need to know more about the distribution of this species. Report sightings of any fireflies you see in the sky islands of West Texas to iNaturalist, or consider participating in Firefly Watch! The distinctive morphology and long breeding season of this species may help with species ID, which is notoriously difficult for Photuris species.
  • 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, habitat associations, life history, 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