Ban the Commercial Harvesting of Wild Fireflies in the U.S. and China

  • by: Jessica Ramos
  • recipient: Gina McCarthy,Administrator of the United States Environmental Protection Agency; Chen Jining, China's Minister of Environmental Protection

Fireflies leave a little sparkle and magic wherever they go. But a growing body of evidence shows that the fireflies that light up our summer nights are headed towards a bleak future because of habitat loss, light pollution, pesticides and commercial harvesting.

Wild fireflies are commercially harvested both in the U.S. and China for different reasons. In the U.S., their unique light-producing chemicals are extracted. In China, hundreds of thousands of fireflies are used as props in theme parks to entice tourists.

The commercial harvesting of fireflies is a big and completely unnecessary problem. But we can work to swiftly solve commercial harvesting. Sara Lewis, a professor of evolutionary ecology at Tufts University, and author of Silent Sparks: The Wondrous World of Fireflies (2016), stresses that in order "[t]o conserve fireflies for future generations to enjoy, commercial harvesting from wild populations should be banned, both in China and in the United States."

Sign and share this petition urging China and the United States to ban the commercial harvesting of wild fireflies. Because when the fireflies flicker out so will their magic.

Photo Credit: Moyan Brenn

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