And its lightning bugs...........(fireflies to some of you) but a very special kind of lightning bug.
Each year in the Smoky Mountains park, especially around the Elkmont Campground and Little River Trail area, the lightning bugs put on a special and spectacular light show for visitors.
Large groups of them combine to flash in unison. Now if you've never been out in woods at night and seen literally thousands of these little lights flashing in synronization let me tell you it's truly a sight to behold.
Scientists speculate the syncornized flashing is related to mating. The've observed females lighting on or under a bush and starting to flash their light on and off. Soon male firelies start gathing and in just a few minutes the whole group of fireflies are flashing in almost perfect synronization with each other.
I wonder how the female picks her mate.........longest flash? brightest? Who knows, but it's a wonder to watch.
Starting in June and through July the annual firefly show is usually visible. The crowds have grown so large that the National Park service now runs mandatory trolly shuttle from the Sugarlands visitors center to Elkmont, no outside vehicles allowed.
The round trip ride is a bargain for only $1.00 round trip and I guarantee you'll be fascinated for hours on end watching a huge, dark woods full of lightning bugs flashing on and off at the same time.