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Florida intertidal firefly

Micronaspis floridana
Larva of the Florida intertidal firefly. (Photo: Ted C. MacRae.)
U.S. State
Life History

Activity Period and Flash Signal

Adults can be active year-round, but particularly from March – May. Males emit short single or bimodal flashes every couple seconds; females respond with prolonged, modulated glow-flashes lasting up to a minute.

Adult of the Florida intertidal firefly. (Photo: Drew Fulton)

The Florida intertidal firefly occurs along the Florida coast and on some northern islands of the Bahamas.

Habitat Associations

True to its name, this species inhabits the intertidal zone of salt marshes, mudflats, and mangroves in coastal areas.

Conservation Status

This species is threatened by coastal development, light pollution, agricultural activities, and pesticides. Mangroves are among the most endangered coastal habitats in Florida, and many have already been decimated, potentially leading to the decline of this species. Increasing frequency and severity of hurricanes and other storms may also pose a threat. Several populations in Florida now appear to be locally extinct.

Conservation Needs
  • We need to know more about the distribution of this species. Report sightings of any flashing fireflies you see along the Florida coast to the Firefly Atlas!
  • 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 is needed for this species.
Prepared By

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