Glow Worm larvae research

We are currently undertaking two research projects looking into the bioluminescent activity produced by the larvae of the Glow Worm (Lampyris noctiluca).

Quite unique for scientific research of this type, our latest research results will be available online at the end of each year, enabling those interested to be able to keep up to date with our theories, results and the latest findings.

 
Project 1: Phase 1 and 2. 2012-2013

Some notes and observations on the bioluminescence exhibited by the larva of the Glow Worm (Lampyris noctiluca) in captivity

Project 1: Phase 1. 2012 was conducted by Trevor and Dilys Pendleton (TDP), based at Market Warsop, Nottinghamshire and Martin Dale (MD), based at Mapperley in Nottingham. The primary aims of this research were to try and determine the following aspects of bioluminescent activity in larvae of the Glow Worm Lampyris noctiluca.

  • To determine consistent patterns in the bioluminescent glows produced by hunting/active larvae
  • To determine if there is any form of bioluminescent interaction between larvae, other invertebrates and prey location etc
  • To determine conditions conducive to larval bioluminescence (seasonal, temperature, wet or dry substrate, hunger etc)
  • To explore the theory that larvae which habitually climb plant stems and glow for long periods, eventually produce females
Access Project 1: Phase 1. 2012 results - January 2013
Observational results of the bioluminescence produced by 25 captive larvae
 
 
Project 2: Phase 1 and 2. 2012-2013

The size variation and age ratios found within the larval population of the Glow Worm (Lampyris noctiluca) during Autumn

Project 2: Phase 1 and 2. 2012-2013 were conducted by Trevor and Dilys Pendleton (TDP), based at Market Warsop, Nottinghamshire. We were also assisted by Martin Dale (MD) based in Nottingham, who assisted us with field survey work and also provided important comparison data based on observations of captive larvae.

  • The number of active larvae present during the latter months of the year (post adult glowing season)
  • The period of larval activity during the Autumn and early Winter months
  • Peak time for greatest larval activity
  • The range of larval sizes present on site
  • The usual hunting range of larvae in relation to forest paths and tracks
  • Activity of larvae in relation to ground temperature
Access Project 2: Phase 1. 2012 results - December 2012
Access Project 2: Phase 2. 2013 results - March 2014
     
     
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