Firefly counting project to hit Georgetown

GEORGETOWN, S.C. (WCSC) - Folks in Georgetown will have their eyes peeled for flashing fireflies on June 1 as part of a project by Clemson University.

The Clemson Vanishing Firefly Project will make its way to Georgetown to look into the forces that may be causing a decline in the firefly population.

Researchers will investigate the impact that urban development, changes in forestry practices, and humans have on fireflies. They will also look at weather patterns in South Carolina as a possible reason for the decline in the flashing insects.

The project was launched in 2010 by entomologist Juang-Horng Chong and biogeochemist Alex Chow.

Residents in Georgetown are asked to assist with the firefly field day, which will take place June 1 from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m.

"We need you, the citizen scientists, to participate and help with collecting the data," says Chow.

Those interested in assisting can help with a survey at Hobcaw Barony, submit data via an Apple ap called Flash Counter, or submit data through an online survey.

The Hobcaw Barony field day survey will begin before sunset with a brief orientation on firefly biology and identification. Participants will return at night to count the fireflies.

For more information on the project, contact Chow at or Chong

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