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HindustanTimes Fri,01 Aug 2014

Catch fireflies to predict monsoon

Sneha Mahale  Mumbai, May 18, 2013
First Published: 12:45 IST(18/5/2013) | Last Updated: 19:39 IST(18/5/2013)

This June, catch millions of fireflies light up the night sky and signal the start of the monsoon

With the monsoon around the corner, humidity levels are at an all-time high and will remain so throughout June. While this muggy weather might be energy sapping, the next month could be a great time to see one of the most awe-inspiring spectacles that nature has to offer — millions of fireflies lighting up the night in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra.

“Enjoy baskets full of freshly-plucked organic mangoes whilst watching 10 million fireflies lighting up the night sky signalling the beginning of the monsoon season,” says Inir Pinheiro, founder of Grassroutes, an organisation that promotes rural tourism. The group will take city slickers to Purushwadi, a small village in Maharashtra throughout June. Here, visitors can watch this phenomenon unfold.
Firefly flashes are part of a complex system of insect attraction. Male fireflies use distinctive patterns of flashing and flying to signal females of their species on the ground. Females then respond with a flash after an interval. The signal means that they are of the same species. The flashes and patterns are unique to each species (there are about 2,000 firefly species). As part of the trip, you could also participate in the fun-filled afternoons by eating ripe mangoes, karvandas and jamuns. You could also just laze around or go to the local river for a swim. 
Similarly, Prateek Deo of Life Away From Life is also organising a trip on June 8 for people interested in the “fireflies festival.” He explains that fireflies produce a “cold light”, with no infrared or ultraviolet frequencies. The chemically-produced light that is emitted from the lower abdomen may be yellow, green, or pale red, with wavelengths from 510 to 670 nanometers. Fireflies use this bioluminescence to attract mates or prey.

To book your trip with Grassroutes, email info@grassroutes.co.in. You could also call on 88794 77437
For more info on Life Away
From Life’s trip, log on to
www.lifeawayfromlife.com. You could also call on 6609 6693 /98691 58351.

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