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Predatory Glow Worms Found In Peruvian Amazon


Wildlife photographer Jeff Cremer found something very unusual in the Peruvian rain forest: little glowing green dots. They were larva, and they appeared to have teeth! So far, the species has not been clearly identified, and it may even be a new species. Continue reading to learn more about this mysterious but showy glow worm and its lifestyle, in pictures and video.
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Most of what people call "glowworms" are not actually larval fireflies. Instead they are larviform females that never develop adult traits like wings. There are many bioluminescent predatory insects in the world, even within just North America.
One of my favorite examples is female fireflies in the genus Photuris. These females will mimic the flash patterns of female Photinus fireflies (a different genus) just because they like to eat male Photinus fireflies.
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I remember when I first studied entomology in college, seeing "glowworms", the larvae of fireflies(lightning bugs) of the beetle family Lampiridae. Bioluminescence is a neat chemical trick. Also saw "Foxfire" when camping in the Adirondacks. Very spooky to wake up in the middle of the night and see the forest floor all aglow from bioluminescent fungus. Life is full of wonders.
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