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What are luminous insects?

Hussien Shrief Mohammed
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luminous animals


Luminous animals are known as beings that have a special ability to emit light, and this phenomenon occurs in many animals, as there are some types of luminous animals such as bacteria, fungi, insects, fish and marine invertebrates, while other animal types lack these emissions such as amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals.



What are luminous insects?
luminous insect


This phenomenon occurs as a result of chemical reactions that convert chemical energy into radiant energy directly, and this phenomenon is of great importance to the animals themselves that have the ability to emit light.


These emissions can help them to protect by confusing enemies or to attract prey and frighten predators, and simply this phenomenon helps light the way for the organism in the dark, and in the following we will talk about luminous insects.


luminous insects


There are some types of insects that have a great ability to emit light, and beetles comprise the largest group of species that have developed organs to generate light, although most luminous animals are related to luminescent bacteria.


However, insects have managed to develop special optical organs to produce light, and luminous organs generally arise from fatty bodies, and these organs are usually located either on the head, chest, abdomen, or on two areas of the body, and in the following we will talk about some types of insects luminous:


  • Firefly: Also called the luminous insect, these insects produce lights as a chemical product from the lower abdomen and are usually yellow, green or pale red, with wavelengths ranging from 510 to 670 nanometers.


  • The crackling beetle: This insect includes about 9300 species known around the world, and there are some types of this insect in large and colorful sizes, but most of them do not exceed 2 cm in length and are brown or black, and this insect is also known for its luminous ability.


  • Night lamp: These insects are distinguished by their ability to bioluminescence, the females of these insects are always able to light, while the males can or may not light.


Benefits of lighting feature for insects


After identifying the luminous insects, we will talk about the benefits of lighting in insects, as these insects can light up for various reasons such as defense, attraction, escape, vision in the dark and many other reasons. In the following, the benefits of lighting in insects will be identified:


  • Mating signal: where the lighting of insects helps to attract individuals of the same species to collect them, thus providing a greater opportunity for mating, and lighting differs between insect species and between sexes.



  • Predation: Some types of luminous insects use their light to attract food, such as the New Zealand screwworm fly, which performs the process of lighting at night to attract other types of insects inside the caves to feed on them.



  • Defense: Some types of insects use their light as a means of defense and intimidate their predators. Examples of these insects are railway worms, which use this method to defend themselves from the attacks of predators.

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