This summer, Allegany State Park’s Environmental Education Department will offer hikes to view the rare Synchronous Fireflies – once thought to exist in only a handful of places in the world.

The Photinus Carolinus species, also known as the Synchronous Firefly, flashes only from late June to mid-July.

In 2012, the Firefly International Research and Education Team (FIRE Team) came to study the local firefly species, and confirmed its existence in the Branch Creek area of Allegheny National Forest.

Adele Wellman, Lead Naturalist for Allegany State Park, and her team of environmental educators, along with numerous volunteers received training necessary to identify this species. The Park Naturalists were able to identify the Synchronous Firefly and confirm its first sighting in New York State.

Allegany State Park will offer the opportunity to view this special species, which flashes simultaneously in an apparent competition display to attract females.

  Firefly walks are scheduled in the park on the following dates.

June 28 and July 2 at 9:30 p.m. on France Brook Road, Site 29, near the entrance to Group Camp 12; Thursday, July 5 at 9:30 p.m. at the Tornado Blowdown area, Site 68.

More dates will be announced at later time. Please note, in the event of severe weather, the program will be cancelled.

For information on other programs, check out Allegany State Park’s Facebook page.