What Is the Color of Fireflies?

color-fireflies Credit: Westend61/Getty Images

Fireflies are dark brown to black in color. Despite their name, only certain firefly species have the ability to emit a glowing effect at night, according to Smithsonian Magazine. A firefly's glow can be green, orange or yellow in color. Glowing male fireflies flash their light to attract female fireflies.

Glowing fireflies possess the ability to control the amount of light they emit. They often synchronize their flashes with one another, creating patterns as part of a mating display. The light emitted from a firefly is created by chemical reactions in the abdomen. While the common belief is that fireflies are flies, they are actually beetles. Female fireflies possess short wings. Many females cannot fly, so they typically perch on rocks or bushes and exchange mating signals with the males.