Pyrophorus

Pyrophorus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Coleoptera
Family: Elateridae
Subfamily: Agrypninae
Tribe: Pyrophorini
Genus: Pyrophorus
Illiger, 1809
Species

many

Pyrophorus is a genus of click beetle (family Elateridae). They are one of several genera in the tribe Pyrophorini, all of which are bioluminescent. Their bioluminescence is similar to that of another group of beetles, the fireflies, although click beetles do not flash, but remain constantly glowing (though they can control the intensity; for example, they become brighter when touched by a potential predator). They have two luminescent spots at the posterior corners of the pronotum, and another ventral spot. Bioluminescent click beetles are only found in tropical and subtropical America.

Adult Pyrophorus beetles feed on pollen and sometimes small insects, such as aphids or scale insects. Their larvae feed on various plant materials and invertebrates, including the larvae of other beetles. Eggs are luminous and are deposited either on or in the soil. Larvae, like eggs, are luminous. They grow slowly and pupate after an uncertain period of time, but perhaps several years after hatching.

Video showing a pyrophorus in Argentina.

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