Pyrophorus (beetle)

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


Pyrophorus (also known as Fire Beetles) 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 brighter spot in the dorsal region of the abdomen. This spot is even brighter and can only be seen when in flight. Bioluminescent click beetles are found throughout tropical and subtropical America, including Texas and Florida.

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.

Pyrophorus nyctophanus larvae live in tunnels in the outer layers of termite mounds on the cerrado of Brazil. During summertime they glow at night, attracting prey in the form of other insects.[1]

List of species[edit]


  1. ^ Hogue, C.L. (1993). Latin American Insects and Entomology. University of California Press. p. 256. ISBN 9780520078499. Retrieved 2015-06-23. 

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