Park Authority

CONTACT INFORMATION: Open during regular business hours 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday - Friday
703-324-8700 TTY 711
12055 Government Center Pkwy.
Fairfax, Virginia 22035
Jai Cole
Executive Director

Department Resources

Fireflies Light Up the Summer Night Sky

firefliesThe transition from spring to summer brings the enchanting light show of fireflies, also known as lightning bugs, to the evening skies. These fascinating insects use bioluminescence to attract mates, with males emitting a distinctive green flash. Firefly eggs and larvae also glow. However, despite their beauty, fireflies are declining due to light pollution, pesticide use and habitat loss.

The good news is that you can attract fireflies to your yard by following these tips:

  • Plant Native Plants: These help retain soil moisture and provide food and shelter for fireflies.
  • Eliminate Invasive Plants: Replacing invasive plants with native species helps attract insects that fireflies eat, such as slugs and snails.
  • Retain Leaf Litter: Fireflies need moist leaf litter to breed. Leave sections of fallen leaves in your yard to support their lifecycle.
  • Reduce Outdoor Illumination: Fireflies are attracted to darker areas for finding mates. Even small amounts of light can negatively impact their ability to reproduce.

Learn more by visiting the Park Authority blog website.

After making your yard firefly-friendly, contribute to citizen science by reporting your sightings at the Firefly Atlas website

Are you ready to witness fireflies in the parks? Experience the magical dance of fireflies illuminating Fairfax County Parks with these upcoming programs:

Fireflies in the Meadow: Saturdays, June 22, 29, and July 5, 8:30-9:30 p.m., $8

Register for Fireflies in the Meadow

Firefly Walks:

  • Lake Fairfax Park: Saturday, June 1, 8:30-9:30 p.m., $8
  • Burke Lake Park: Friday, June 28, 8:30-9:30 p.m., $8
  • Huntley Meadows Park: Friday, June 28, Saturday, June 29, Friday, July 5 and Saturday, July 6, 8-10 p.m., $10

Register for Firefly Walk

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