Get rid of fireflies in your backyard with a blender
Fireflies are a beautiful thing, with their flashing lights and pheromones that attract a mate. There are few things in the world more magical than seeing those little creatures floating on the summer breeze and they can be seen everywhere from late evening to evening in the springtime. But one of the major drawbacks of fireflies is how many people like to release them into their backyards. The idea is great but the reality is that many of fireflies do not survive after being released. Most of these can be attributed to the fact that they were offered a poor opportunity at survival.
The idea is great since people enjoy feeding the insects and allowing them to live in your backyard. It gives you a sense of connection to nature and it feels good to have such creatures alive on your property. But, if possible, try to avoid doing this because not all of these creatures survive their new habitat. If you care about fireflies and want to allow them to live in your yard then there are a few things that you can do.
Cut the bottom off a plastic bottle
Rid your back yard of fireflies with a blender. Cut the bottom off of a plastic bottle and place it over the firefly. The only thing you need to do is to make sure that the air can flow through the tube into the plastic bottle and not just one way. It takes some time for them to get accustomed to this new environment and they will pretty much stay inside. But there are still some that are bound to go outside and end up being smashed against concrete, brushed against wood or even crushed underfoot. One way you can prevent this is to put a bug screen on the outside of the plastic bottle. You can make one out of a piece of tinfoil cut to the right dimensions. After that, you need to open the bottom of the plastic bottle enough so that they can get in (because they can’t crawl under) and yet not be able to fly out. Make sure there aren’t any sharp edges or anything you wouldn’t want a firefly walking over in the back yard.
You could also try to put a 2 liter pop bottle upside down inside of the plastic bottle. The reason you would do this is because they do not like their head touching the top side. I place a piece of tape with a hole in the middle on the underside of the pop bottle so that I can stick my head in and eat them.
Tape the top of the bottle to the bottom so it creates a funnel shape
This step is not necessary but you want to make sure that the fireflies are contained in the bottle. You can place a small rubber band through the hole in the bottle and around the cap so that it has a funnel shape. This funnel shape helps to ensure that they do not fly out the top or bottom of the bottle.
Now squeeze the bottle until you hear the fireflies pop. This usually takes a good few minutes. It may help to use your fingers to press down on the fireflies as they are popping out of their containers, you can also use scissors or tweezers for easier access.
Once none are left, unscrew the top and place in your jars or containers immediately.
Additional notes: ( one time I had the top of the bottle come off so I duct taped it to keep it from spilling. Also remember they will be dead and gooey so you may want to wear rubber or latex gloves.)
Pour some dish soap into the bottle
This is a very important step because fireflies are attracted to soap and there are some that will be attracted to dish soap. It really depends on where you live and what kind of dish soap you have at your local store. If the dish soap is too strong, then it may not work. You want to use a dish soap that has no scent. Hold the bottle above the dish soap and slowly pour a few drops until it is about half full. If there are still dots, add more. Try to make the soap about half full.
Leave the bottle in a cool place for at least 3-5 days. After that time, drain the dish soap and refill with rubbing alcohol. This will ensure a brighter light because the fireflies cannot survive in alcohol. Fireflies need to be in water, so you want to put the bottle in some water for about a day before you take it out of the dish soap.
Now that the fireflies are in the bottle, try to put them somewhere where they can fly freely. The best place is near a fountain or water supply. If this sounds too difficult to stick around for a few days, you can always ask someone at school who has them. You can look for a licensed firefly breeder to ask or you can even go on craigslist. You should have the fireflies within a week.
Turn on your blender and hold the bottle close to the blades
Place the blending device on top of the bottle with the spirals inside and turn it on. It may take a few minutes for them to get used to this new environment. Some people change it up by putting an aquarium CO2 filter in front of the spinning blades and this is a great way to keep them from escaping but I have not tried that method. Another method that I did try is to just place a bug screen over the top of the blender and leave it on for about 5 minutes or so. You need to pay attention that none of them attempt to fly out the top. Once you see no one trying to leave, turn off the blender and remove the bug screen. This will make it very easy for them to get used to their new environment. I would keep them in the blender for about a day or so and then change it up by placing them in an aquarium that you don’t plan on using for a few days.
Another method involves placing a fan directly behind the bottle and just like with the blender you need to put something like a bug screen over the opening of the bottle and make sure that no fireflies are trying to escape up past the fan. This is a great way to keep them from escaping and the noise of the fan will keep the fireflies from getting too comfortable there.
Removing fireflies from your home is one of many ways to control annoying insects. [END ARTICLE]”