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Fireflies

The lightning bugs illuminate the summer evenings in the wilds of Southern Ontario

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Last updated: by Dari Vasiljeva

The wilderness area of Southern Ontario is home to several species of fireflies. The light show may be seen for several weeks in summer, when the weather gets warm and humid, usually between late June and early July. As the darkness creeps in, the green flashes appear among the trees and grasses, and this performance typically lasts for only a couple of hours.

The bugs produce bioluminescent light in their abdomen, and it serves for communication during their mating season. Thousands of males fly around trying to impress the females, while the latter just sit on grass blades assessing the efforts. When a female chooses the "right partner," she points her abdomen in his direction, so that the select could see her twinkling response. Sadly, after the mating and laying the eggs, all adults die.

Ojibway Nature Reserve, located on the southern tip of Ontario near the border with Michigan, is one of the best places to observe the charming spectacle. Another firefly location is the Algonquin Provincial Park, about 152 mi (245 km) west of Ottawa. Some viewing spots may be found even closer to the capital, namely south or south-west of the city near the lakes. Chaffey's Lock is a good location, only around 78 mi (125 km) from the city of Ottawa.

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