Great Smoky Mountains officials announce dates for synchronous firefly viewing

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GATLINBURG, Tenn. (AP) – Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials are announcing the predicted peak dates for viewing the park’s synchronous fireflies this year.

A news release says the fireflies are expected to exhibit their unique synchronous flashing between May 30 and June 6. All visitors wishing to view the fireflies during this period must have a parking pass distributed by lottery.

The lottery is open for applications April 26-29. Applications are available at www.recreation.gov or by calling 1-877-444-6777.

The application fee is $1 and successful applicants will be charged a $24 reservation fee.

The park has limited access to the Elkmont area during the predicted peak activity of the fireflies since 2006. That’s in order to reduce traffic and minimize the disturbance to the fireflies during the critical two-week mating period.

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