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Never had the opportunity to see the synchronous fireflies in the Smoky Mountains? Here’s your chance to see them from home! At the end of May, Discover Life in America is hosting its annual firefly event near Gatlinburg. On June 1, you can tune into their free virtual event and see the fireflies from wherever you are! We have all the details on the Smoky Mountain fireflies event and how you can see the fireflies.
Smoky Mountain Fireflies Event
Discover Life in America is hosting its annual firefly event near Gatlinburg! The in-person event will take place on May 29, 30 and 31 from 7:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. at Norton Creek Preserve. The cost to attend the event is $225 per person, and all proceeds go toward Discover Life in America, which conducts research in the park. If you plan on attending the event in person, keep in mind that it’s limited to 30 guests each night, and masks and social distancing are required. The event is not affiliated with the annual Smoky Mountain fireflies lottery or event in Elkmont, nor the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. You can get tickets on the organization’s website.
How to Watch the Smoky Mountain Fireflies at Home
This year, you don’t have to travel to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to see the Smoky Mountain fireflies! Discover Life in America is making it possible for you to watch its firefly event from home. On June 1, the organization is hosting a free virtual event on YouTube at 8 p.m. This is the first time everyone will be able to watch the incredible synchronous fireflies no matter where they are, and you don’t have to spend a dime!
Keep checking back for more details about the virtual firefly event and how you can watch.
About Discover Life in America
Discover Life in America is a non-profit organization in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park that focuses on learning more about all the species of life in the park. The group funds and organizes the All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory, which brings some of the world’s top researchers into the Smokies. The ATBI is an effort to identify and record every species within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Discover Life in America also works to engage the public with educational programs and help people learn more about the biodiversity in the national park.
About the Smoky Mountain Fireflies
Synchronous fireflies are one of at least 19 species of fireflies in the Smoky Mountains. They are the only species in America whose individuals can synchronize their flashing light patterns! The light patterns of fireflies are part of their mating display. The males fly and flash, and the stationary females respond with a flash. Most species produce a greenish-yellowish light, but one species has a bluish light. Their mating season lasts about two weeks each year, typically in late May and early June.
We’re so excited that everyone has the opportunity to enjoy the Smoky Mountain fireflies this year! We’ll update you with more information about the virtual firefly event when we get it. In the meantime, learn more about other species in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.