Taipei cancels firefly season due to COVID-19

Fireflies in Taipei / Image courtesy of Taipei City government

TAIPEI (CNA) — The annual firefly season in Taipei and its many events have been canceled because of restrictions imposed to combat the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) epidemic, the city’s Parks and Street Lights Office (PSLO) said Monday.

This year’s activities, which originally included firefly tour guides, concerts, and celebrations for Earth Day, held every April 22 to promote environmental protection, have all been canceled as part of social distancing measures, the PSLO said in a statement.

The firefly season was originally slated to be held from April 13 to May 3 at various parks across the city, the PSLO said.

Even though the event and its activities have been canceled, people can still visit Taipei’s Daan Forest Park, Muzha Park, and Rongxing Park to see fireflies, PSLO Director Chen Jung-hsing (陳榮興) said.

Fireflies in Taipei (Image courtesy of Taipei City government)
A firefly (Image courtesy of Taipei City government)

Chen reminded visitors, however, to not set loose any animals or plant any seeds of plants in any of the park’s ecological ponds to prevent the dying out of native fauna or flora species, which could devastate the fireflies’ food supply and natural habitat.

People should also refrain from using flashlights or camera flashes to avoid disturbing the natural wildlife, he said.

The cancellation of the firefly season follows the city’s decision to cancel its annual Muslim festival Eid al-Fitr to try to minimize the risk of large clusters of COVID-19 infections.

Fireflies in Taipei / Photo courtesy of Taipei City government