What makes certain insects glow?



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    There is a large family of beetles Lamyridae, more commonly called fire flies or glow worms that are capable of producing their own light. Some species use this light for mate attraction others for prey attraction. They create the light through a process called bioluminescence. A chemical reaction takes place in the presence of oxygen and it creates light. (to get into the nitty gritty a chemical called luciferin is acted upon by the enzyme luciferase in the presence of oxygen, magnesium ions, and ATP to emit the photos). The most interesting part of this reaction is that the light given off is called a “cold light” meaning all the light produced is in the visible spectrum, none in the UV or Inferred.

    Glow worms are the larval stage of fireflies and they seem to pulse their light to let predators know they are toxic.

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