Firefly Watch: View & Explore Data

Lupines & Fireflies © Mike Lewinski (CC BY 2.0) via Flickr
Lupines & Fireflies © Mike Lewinski (CC BY 2.0)

Lupines & Fireflies © Mike Lewinski (CC BY 2.0)


We worked with volunteers at Mapbox to create a visualization of firefly report density from the observations collected during the summer of 2018. Adjust the slider to see how the reported firefly numbers vary week to week through the summer.

View the map fullscreen.

Week of



Visualization of firefly reports in 2018, by Matthew Smith and Mapbox volunteers Lo Benichou and Sam Fader.


The map below shows firefly observation data. Click on an individual marker to see a participant's first and last recorded observations at that location. See the legend below the map for an explanation of the "fireflies seen" icons.


"Fireflies Seen" Legend

Icons indicate the average of all 3 counts submitted per observation period. 

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1-5 fireflies seen
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6-10 fireflies seen
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11-25 fireflies seen
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More than 25 fireflies seen

Archived Data

The Museum of Science in Boston spearheaded the Firefly Watch project for the 9 years. The data from 2008–2016 is available for download as a Microsoft Excel (.xlsx) file.