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Firefly Larva - Photuris

Firefly Larva - Photuris
Fort Bragg, Cumberland County, North Carolina, USA
December 3, 2005
Size: about 12 mm
Head not visible like in the other carrion larva I saw in the guide. Found under wooden 2X2.

Images of this individual: tag all
Firefly Larva - Photuris Firefly Larva - Photuris Firefly Larva - Photuris

Moved from Photuris larvae.

Moved from Photuris.

Thanks Artjom
Moved from Fireflies.

Definitely Photuris
Definitely Photuris

Moved from Beetles.

Broad, blunt head covering is unique.
Most of the firefly larvae we see have a strongly tapered, elongate anterior section. If you get a chance to rear one, do it. eventually we'll know what species all these larvae are. Anyway, it's a mighty handsome juvenile.

I would love to rear it, but I'm afraid I wouldn't know where to begin with something like this.

Do a google search for "firefly larvae eat"
I found The Firefly Notebooks by Terry Lynch, selected transcriptions from his notes over years of life cycle research of various firefly genera, which make fascinating reading. It's all on one lonnnng Web page. Scrolling down about 7/8 of the way to the bottom is this note that contains much of what you would need to know about diet:

"With respect to the feeding behavior of Photuris larvae vs. Photinid larvae, Photuris larvae appears to have a roving, scavenging feeding behavior, to search through the upper layers of leaf litter and soil debris, to be opportunistic and to eat any type of suitable soft bodies animals, alive or dead which it may chance to encounter. In contrast Photinid larvae are far more host specific and tend to have a burrowing behavior in keeping with the fact their preferred food is earthworms which they prey upon and eat alive."

Lynch found that Photuris larvae will eat moistened dry dogfood whereas photinid larvae will not.

Now you know...

thanks...I think... :)
Would you happen to know how long it would take for something like this to develop into an adult?

Less time than it takes to read Lynch's Website ;-)
Actually, I suppose it is dependent on temperature and food supply, as it is with most beetle larvae. I think Lynch mentioned 10 - 11 months at one point. That's egg to adult. With an already good-sized larva, it could be a month or two.

I'm thinking this is either the larva of a firefly (Lampyridae), or netwinged beetle (Lycidae). Carrion beetle larvae are almost always found in, well, carrion:-)

I'm guess you're right with Firefly larva. I saw quite a few similar images and found this site that shows larva changing to adult...pretty neat.

Another comparison shot
can be seen here. It says Photuris sp.

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