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Fireworks and Fireflies in Our Indiana Backyards

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July 6, 2016 at 2:27 am

What a wonderful article you wrote!!! Thank you so much of supporting Kayla, and my students from Room 23 at Cumberland Elementary School in West Lafayette, IN. The students from Room 23 have been working for almost two year trying to convince the IGA to establish the Say's Firefly (Pyractomena angulata) as Indiana's official state insect. Kayla and her classmates do not want Indiana to be the last state to acquire one. Michigan and Iowa are also without a state insect.

As we continue on this quest for the firefly, Hoosiers everywhere ask us the following question. "Why DOESN'T Indiana have a state insect?" The President of the Benton County Commissioners said it best when the Commissioners passed a Resolution this past June making the Say's Firefly Benton County's insect. "I'd rather have the firefly be our insect than the mosquito!" After that, the vote was unanimous for the Say's Firefly. Kayla was so delighted that she had given such a persuasive presentation to the Benton County Commissioners. (Thanks again to Jeff Brooks, a teacher from Boswell, for getting the firefly on the Commissioners' agenda!)

As the 2016-17 school year begins, we ask students from all over the state to please contact their own state legislators asking them to support making the Say's Firefly our official state insect! (They should call the Statehouse and leave a message, send a personal letter, or an e-mail.) After all, Indiana was established 200 years ago. Thomas Say, also known as the Father of American Entomology, named this firefly 190 years ago in southern Indiana near New Harmony. In addition, this particular firefly is indigenous to North America. My class learned that approximately 50% of the current state insects were brought over from Europe. Therefore, the Say's Firefly can claim its roots in Indiana making it a very impressive Hoosier insect!!

Room 23 appreciates your wonderful story and your support for the Say's Firefly!!!

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