County North Carolina
Voting in North Carolina N.C. General Election Information
Graham County Sample Ballot Show me my Voter Information
LIGHTNING BUGS LIGHT UP SUMMER NIGHTS
By Marshall McClung
"Lightning bugs", better known to some as the firefly, have been blinking their little "tail lights" for quiet some time now, and will continue to do so until the end of summer. This small, soft-shelled beetle is known to entomologists as Lampyridae, the Greek word for torch, and most likely where we got the name lamp for early man-made lights.
Lightning bugs or fireflies have been around for centuries and have been studied intensely by scientists. For all their investigation, it still remains somewhat of a puzzle, which delights those of us who think that nature should be able to keep a few little secrets of its own.
This much scientists have learned, that the light is produced by the oxidation of a substance called luciferin in the insect's body. The mystery that remains is why the firefly produces the light in the first place. Several theories have emerged, none proven, including that it is used for sexual attraction, a mating lure. Another thought is that it is a "caution light" to ward off nocturnal birds. But other night insects do not have this light, and they survive. Added to the mystery is the fact that the immature larvae of the firefly and even the unhatched eggs are often also luminous.
Children aren't bothered by all this logic, often catching fireflies and placing them in glass containers., the closest we will come to "carrying moonbeams home in a jar", as the song implies.
The firefly isn't bothered by what the scientists think either. It goes right on blinking in the summer nights as it has done for time out of mind, perhaps to teach man that God is in charge of nature, and to show us that we do not yet know all there is to know about God and his creation.
Agriculture Arts and Crafts Cherohala Skyway Cherokee Nation Churches
Education Election Information Emergency Services Family Resources Fontana Dam
Forestry Facts Genealogy General Information Government Health Care
Hiking/Camping History Local Color Library Map of Graham Co. Media
N.C. Forest Service Real Estate Swan Cabin Sheriff's Department Travel & Tourism
U.S.F.S. District HQ U.S. Forest Service Utility Services Weather Forecast Wildflowers
These pages are from the people of Graham County, North Carolina.
For additional information on Graham County Adventures
the Travel and Tourism Authority or
go to the Visitors Information Center of the Travel and Tourism Authority Webpage
or call 1-800-470-3790 or 828-479-3790 Fax 1-828-479-4733
This page is maintained by Tom Livingston, Robbinsville, North Carolina