Raphaël De Cock

Raphaël De Cock
University of Antwerp | UA · Department of Biology

PhD

About

50
Publications
25,689
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Introduction
Raphaël De Cock currently works as an associate researcher at the Department of Biology, University of Antwerp. His current topics are effects of light pollution on mate searching behaviours and mating success (Coleoptera: Lampyridae); Taxonomic, behavioral ecological studies of European genera Lampyris, Lamprohiza, Luciola, Nyctophila, Phosphaenus, Phosphaenopterus, Lampyroidea, and a newly discovered exotic species of Photinus in Europe; Support and assistance in the set-up of "citizen science/particitipative science" glow-worm and firefly projects and surveys. Currently he assists Mira Van Den Broeck with her Master thesis about effects of artificial illumination on the reproductive behaviour of Lampyris noctiluca. He is IUCN regional coordinator of firefly species specialist for Europe
Additional affiliations
January 2005 - present
University of Antwerp
Position
  • Research Associate

Publications

Publications (50)
Article
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Originaire d’Argentine ou d’Uruguay, probablement arrivée chez nous en 2019 via l’Espagne, cette espèce nouvelle pour la France poursuit en Europe une expansion qu’il sera sans doute difficile de contenir. Déclarée potentiellement invasive, elle pourrait constituer une pression supplémentaire sur nos populations de vers de terre.
Article
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Traducción al español publicada según Creative Commons CC BY 4.0 licencia. Las luciérnagas son escarabajos carismáticos que despliegan atractivas demostraciones bioluminiscentes de cortejo; y, que recientemente se han posicionado en el escenario mundial del turismo de naturaleza. Este artículo proporciona la primera revisión completa del alcance g...
Article
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In August 2018, a firefly (Coleoptera: Lampyridae) of American origin was observed in several localities in Girona (Catalonia, Spain) and was described as Photinus immigrans by Zaragoza-Caballero and Vinolas, 2018. Here, we show that this species dispersed very quickly throughout northeastern Spain and was, in 2020, observed in the French Pyrenees....
Article
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Nocturnal light pollution from anthropogenic origin is increasing worldwide and is recognised as a major threat for nocturnal biodiversity. We studied the impact of artificial light on the mate attraction success of female common glow-worms (Lampyris noctiluca L.) by daily monitoring their glowing status in the field, acting as a proxy for mating s...
Article
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Artificial light at night is an increasing threat to nocturnal biodiversity. Aside from the overall increase in light emission, replacement of old monochromatic streetlighting by broad emission spectrum LED lights may be an additional threat. Studies evaluating the impacts of these artificial lights on the nocturnal European common glow-worm (Lampy...
Article
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Fireflies are charismatic beetles with attractive bioluminescent courtship displays that have recently been swept onto the global stage of nature tourism. Here, we provide the first comprehensive review of the geographic scope, magnitude, focal species, and other attributes of the major firefly tourism sites worldwide. Through targeted interviews a...
Article
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In the original publication of this paper, a sentence in the “Habitat loss and fragmentation” section incorrectly left out a phrase to read “Genome-wide SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism) analysis of Photinus pyralis, a species widespread and abundant across the eastern United States, among populations, with Fst (fixation index) values averaging...
Article
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We review the biology and ecology of the lesser glow-worm Phosphaenus hemipterus (Coleoptera: Lampyridae) and consider its status in Britain, with evidence suggesting that it has been introduced accidentally on a number of occasions.
Poster
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First results of Observatoire des Vers Luisants & des Lucioles (Observatory of Glow-worms and Fireflies) in France. By Estuaire and Cofounded in 2015 with CNRS (Centre National de Recherche Scientifique). Strategy and results from 2015 and 2016. http://www.asterella.eu/index.php?pays=FRANCE
Poster
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Most of the ca. 2000 described lampyrid species are distributed in tropical regions. In regions with more temperate climates however, we deal with much smaller numbers of species. Especially in Europe where the species numbers are quite low, probably due to difficulties in a prehistoric past for species to migrate along a North-South axis to follow...
Poster
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Thanks to efforts of local researchers, enthusiasts and citizen science survey projects, we are getting a quite good image of the distribution of lampyrid species in Flanders, Belgium. First attempts for a lampyrid survey started from 1997 on. Since then various random calls were posted by radio, newspapers and the internet, in order to ask the gen...
Poster
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In past Firefly Symposia we have presented the combined results from the Spanish web-survey “Have you seen a glow-worm?” (http://gusanosdeluz.com) and from the photo-biodiversity database “BiodiversidadVirtual” (http://biodiversidadvirtual.org). These data have enabled us now to update the Spanish distribution of lampyrid species at a much more det...
Poster
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For more than 20 years, the Biological Park of Gaia, in Portugal, has reserved the month of June to open its doors at night in order for the public to participate in the “Noites dos Pirilampos” (Fireflies’ nights). For about 18 nights the Park is host to more than 200 visitors who travel in groups led by a Guide without using artificial lighting to...
Poster
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Due to increased efforts of local researchers, enthusiasts and (online) citizen science survey projects, blogs and internet forums, we are getting a quite good image of the distribution of lampyrid species present in North, Central, South and Southwest Europe (Portugal, Spain, France, British isles and Ireland, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Switze...
Poster
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Fireflies are well known to present a range of defensive mechanisms to avoid predation. Among them, some species possess the ability to reflex bleed when disturbed by emitting droplets of hemolymph, usually from the elytra or the pronotum. The knowledge about defensive eversible organs in larvae has been expanded by Tyler (2001), who described them...
Poster
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To this day there is still some degree of taxonomy-related uncertainty prevailing within the genus Luciola Laporte, 1833 in Europe. Thanks to the extensive phenotypic plasticity, the numerous synonyms have been finally grouped into three currently recognized species. These are Luciola italica Linnaeus, 1767, Luciola lusitanica Charpentier, 1825 and...
Poster
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Among the three currently recognized species of European Luciola, the coastal Montenegro endemic Luciola novaki Müller, 1946 has been neglected for decades. No work describing its morphology, or behaviour exists after its first description in 1946 and the last reference comes from 1967. The last specimens to be collected were from the 1950’s and co...
Article
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In contrast to most other North American fireflies that use flash dialogs for courtship, males of Phausis reticulata Say (Coleoptera: Lampyridae) (Fender 1966), often called blue ghost fireflies, glow as they fly slowly over the forest floor searching for flightless, neotenic females that are likewise bioluminescent. Recently, these Blue Ghost fire...
Poster
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This poster presents data about small scale survey excursions for firefly species in Southern Spain performed as a volunteer for the Spanish lampyrid project “¿Has visto una luciérnaga?” (Have you seen a glow-worm? http://gusanosdeluz.es) between 21th and 27th of May 2012, and a short excursion trip to the region of Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur in Fr...
Poster
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In 2010, we presented a poster at the International Firefly Symposium at Selangor, Malaysia, with preliminary results of a web-survey on the distribution of lampyrid species in Spain based on data of one year (2009-2010) coming from the web-survey “Have you seen a glow-worm?” (http://gusanosdeluz.es) and a photo-biodiversity database called “Biodiv...
Poster
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Fireflies, although very popular with the public, are not often the topic of survey studies. Our knowledge about the distribution, phenology and local biodiversity of most lampyrids stays usually poorly known. Why? This is probably due to the fact that the common public - although interested : Is not aware about the presence of different specie, do...
Poster
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Many firefly species are characterized and even identifiable by their bioluminescent displays, especially the flashing species. However, we do not always carry the necessary equipment to measure the spectral color or wavelength (spectrophotometer) or to register detailed flash behavior (cameras, photomultipliers, etc.) when in the field or during u...
Poster
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We investigated the null hypothesis that Luciola italica is one species across the Mediterranean by using molecular taxonomy to examine DNA differences in species collected from Portugal, France, Italy and Greece. The partial sequence of the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (COI) gene and the majority of the luciferase (LUC) gene were used to inv...
Article
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Abstract Abstract Adult female glow-worms, Lampyris noctiluca, Linnaeus, 1767, emit light from the abdominal ventrites 6 and 7 and a retained larval paired organ on segment 8. Both larvae and adult males exhibit a much smaller paired light organ in the penultimate segment. Using sensitive imaging techniques low level bioluminescence was observed w...
Technical Report
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Survey of the most common June fireflies in Forest and Warren Counties, PA in the Allegheny National Forest with photographs, habitat description and general flash data by the FIRE team. June 2012
Article
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Food theft is a common foraging strategy in birds, and many arthropods steal prey trapped by orb-weaving spiders. Some fireflies (Coleóptera: Lampyridae) within the North American genus Photuris Dejean (Coleoptera: Lampyridae) are specialist predators which actively hunt for and sequester chemical defenses (lucibufagins) from other fireflies. Here...
Article
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In the Great Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee, the Light Show is a popular seasonal attraction created by thousands of courting male Photinus carolinus fireflies (Coleoptera: Lampyridae) that flash in synchrony to locate females. This study was undertaken to provide a temporal snapshot of whether invertebrate predators are active within these dens...
Poster
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Discovery of synchronous flashing in a species of Luciola from Paxos, Ionian Islands, Greece, Eurrope.
Article
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Larval defensive behaviour and eversible organ morphology were compared in the firefly species Luciola cruciata Motschulsky 1854, L. lateralis Motschulsky 1860, L. leii Fu et Ballantyne 2006, Lampyris noctiluca Linnaeus 1767, Pyrocoelia analis Fabricius 1801, P. pectoralis Oliver 1883, P. sp. and two Diaphanes species. In all cases the eversible or...
Article
It is generally believed that the glowing behaviour of lampyrid larvae may be an aposematic display. Moreover, larvae of the common glow-worm (Lampyris noctiluca) show at least two other features, which can be used in aposematic strategies. The first is their suggestive colour pattern of yellow-pinkish lateral dots on a jet-black background and the...
Article
Observed patterns of species richness at landscape scale (gamma diversity) cannot always be attributed to a specific set of explanatory variables, but rather different alternative explanatory statistical models of similar quality may exist. Therefore predictions of the effects of environmental change (such as in climate or land cover) on biodiversi...
Article
Question: Which are the plant functional groups respond- ing most clearly to agricultural disturbances? Which are the relative roles of habitat availability, landscape configuration and agricultural land use intensity in affecting the functional composition and diversity of vascular plants in agricultural landscapes? Location: 25 agricultural lands...
Article
1. In many European agricultural landscapes, species richness is declining considerably. Studies performed at a very large spatial scale are helpful in understanding the reasons for this decline and as a basis for guiding policy. In a unique, large-scale study of 25 agricultural landscapes in seven European countries, we investigated relationships...
Article
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1. In many European agricultural landscapes, species richness is declining considerably. Studies performed at a very large spatial scale are helpful in understanding the reasons for this decline and as a basis for guiding policy. In a unique, large-scale study of 25 agricultural landscapes in seven European countries, we investigated relationships...
Article
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The intensity of agricultural production was assessed in 25 landscape test sites across temperate Europe using a standardised farmer questionnaire. The intensity indicators, nitrogen input (to arable crops and to permanent grassland), density of livestock units and number of pesticide applications (herbicides, insecticides, fungicides and retardant...
Article
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Fireflies are the classic example of organisms that use light signalling for sexual communication. However, many genera have diurnally active adults for which the use of light signals for courtship seems unlikely. It is generally accepted that diurnal fireflies use pheromones instead of light signalling for sexual communication, even though robust...
Article
We studied the spectral characteristics of the larvae of three sympatric Belgian species of fireflies, Lampyris noctiluca, Phosphaenus hemipterus and Lamprohiza splendidula. An in vivo spectral study was performed to compare bioluminescence spectra. The emission spectrum of a laboratory reared female L. noctiluca was recorded by a different, more e...
Article
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It is an established fact that the spectacular bioluminescent displays of adult fireflies and glow-worms are used as courtship signals; however, the survival value of the glowing behavior of their larvae remained the subject of speculation for many years. Our study is the first that demonstrates that lampyrid larvae use luminescence to signal unpal...
Article
Natuur.focus 1: 163–164. First results of a preliminary specialised research on the distribution of the Lesser Glow-worm, Phosphaenus hemipterus (Geoffroy, 1762) in Flanders (Belgium) by using pheromone traps.
Article
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Phosphaenus hemipterus (Fourcroy, 1785) is considered a very rare glow-worm and has conse- quently been studied very little. This paper unites the scattered data on the known distribution of P. hemipterus and gives descriptions of habitat use, phenology and activity patterns at recently discovered sites in Belgium. Adult males were found from mid-J...
Article
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Bioluminescence most likely evolved under selection from the visually guided behaviours of co-occurring organisms, in particular that of predators. Many possible functions of light signals have been proposed and some are supported, but whatever their function may be, they make an easy target of the emitter unless it is defended. Therefore, we want...

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