And finally… Cycle path lights switched off ‘so glow worms can mate’

Crepuscular mystery. A female glow-worm tries to attaract a mate at Westbury-sub-Mendip. Villagers monitor the poulation by searching fields and lanes in July. Picture: Steve Roberts 20140731
‘Turn the lights down low’

A stretch of a new £125,000 lighting scheme on a popular cycle path will be switched off for five months of the year – so glow worms can mate.

The new LED streetlights have just been erected at Mangotsfield Station on the busy Bristol to Bath route for cyclists.

But they could outshine the female insects’ distinctive green glow and wreck their chances of being spotted by males during the mating season.

The lights will now be turned off between May and September to ensure that the glow worms a chance of breeding.

Conservationists have previously warned that male glow worms are notoriously attracted to artificial lights, prompting concerns over the chance for the insects to breed.

South Gloucestershire Council has now erected signs around Mangotsfield Station to inform users of the blackout.

They read: “Glow worms are fascinating creatures suffering decline. We are committed to trying to protect grassland and safeguard our biodiversity.

“The light is subtle and easily drowned out by street lighting. If the female doesn’t attract a mate she will starve and die without laying eggs.”

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