Summer has arrived, which means longer days and warmer evenings to be spent exploring the great outdoors. In Japan, this season is marked by a magical, natural phenomenon as fireflies spread through the forests around the country, lighting up the night sky. Resembling tiny paper lanterns, these little winged beetles communicate with one another through their steady glows, creating a breathtaking view in the process, if you are lucky enough to stumble upon them.
These little creatures typically breed for short periods of time and are difficult to detect when light pollution drowns out their brilliance, so photographers around the country have to be quick and savvy in order to capture their displays of bioluminescence. Further, the little bugs are extremely sensitive, reacting to lights and pollution and typically only live about 10 days, making images that portray their mystical glow that much more special.
Most of these photographs show composite images, combining anywhere from ten to several hundred different frames to create the supernatural scenes pictured here. Although the real life views may be slightly less dramatic, locals and tourists still flock to events each year that celebrate the critters in all their glory.
via [Spoon & Tamago]