Shedding Light On The New Zealand Glow Worm

When you gaze upon a cave full of New Zealand glow worms, you may think you’re looking at a star-lit night sky. Using a small light organ at the end of their bodies, these tiny gnat larvae illuminate the surfaces of the caves and ravine walls they call home. Their glowing bodies attract their prey, other insects. But they have also lured in biochemists Miriam Sharpe and Kurt Krause, who are working to discover the molecular basis for the glow worm’s bioluminescence.


Produced by Chelsea Fiske, Luke Groskin, and Brandon Swanson

Narrated by Annie Nero

Music by Audio

Additional Footage / Thanks to the film Brilliant Darkness presented by the Zoological Lighting Institute, James Karl Fischer and Emily Driscoll

Meet the Producer

About Luke Groskin

Luke Groskin is Science Friday’s video producer. He’s on a mission to make you love spiders and other odd creatures.