GT Reading Test 7 Section 3 - Glow-worms

GT Reading Mock Test 7:

Section 1  |  Section 2  |  Section 3  |

Section 3: Questions 28-40

You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 28-40.

General Training Reading Sample: GLOW-WORMS

Read the text below and answer Questions 28-40.


by John Tyler

The glow-worm belongs to a family of beetles known as the lampyridae or fireflies. The fireflies are a huge group containing over 2000 species, with new ones being discovered all the time. The feature which makes fireflies and glow-worms so appealing is their ability to produce an often dazzling display of light. The light is used by the adult fireFlies as a signal to attract a mate, and each species must develop its own 'call-sign' to avoid being confused with other species glowing nearby. So within any one area each species will differ from its neighbours in some way, For example in the colour or pattern of its light, how long the pulses of light last, the interval between pulses and whether it displays in flight or from the ground.

The fireflies' almost magical light has attracted human attention for generations. It is described in an ancient Chinese encyclopaedia written over 2000 years ago by a pupil of Confucius. Fireflies often featured in Japanese and Arabian folk medicine. All over the world, they have been the inspiration for countless poems, paintings and stories. In Britain, for example, there are plenty of anecdotes describing how glow-worms have been used to read by or used as emergency bicycle lamps when a cyclist's batteries have failed without warning. Early travellers in the New World came back with similar stories, of how the native people of Central America would collect a type of click beetle and release them indoors to light up their huts. Girls threaded them around their feet to illuminate the forest paths at night.

     Fireflies very similar to those we see today have been found fossilised in rocks which were formed about 30 million years ago, and their ancestors were probably glowing long before then. It is impossible to be sure exactly when and where the first Firefly appeared. The highest concentrations of firefly species today are to be found in the tropics of South America, which may mean either that this is where they First evolved, or simply that they prefer the conditions there.

    Wherever they first arose, fireflies have since spread to almost every part of the globe. Today members of the Firefly family can be found almost anywhere outside the Arctic and Antarctic circles.

As with many insects, the glow-worm's life is divided into four distinct stages: the egg, the larva (equivalent to the caterpillar of a butterfly), the pupa (or chrysalis) and the adult. The glow-worm begins its life in the autumn as a pale yellow egg. The freshly laid egg is extremely fragile but within a day its surface has hardened into a shell. The egg usually takes about 35 days to hatch, but the exact time varies according to the temperature, from about 27 days in hot weather to more than 45 days in cold weather. By the time it is due to hatch, the glow-worm's light organ is fully developed, and its glow signals that the egg will soon hatch.

     After it has left the egg, the larva slowly grows from a few millimetres into the size and shape of a matchstick. The larval stage is the only time the insect can feed. The larva devotes much of its life to feeding and building up its food reserves so that as an adult it will be free to concentrate all its efforts on the task of finding a mate and reproducing. Throughout its time as a larva, approximately 15 months, the glow-worm emits a bright light. The larva's light is much fainter than the adult female's but it can still be seen more than five metres away.

     In the final stage of a glow-worm's life, the larva encases itself in a pupa) skin while it changes from the simple larva to the more complex adult fly. When the adult Ay emerges from the pupa the male seeks a female with whom it can mate. After mating, the female lays about 120 eggs. The adult flies have no mouth parts, cannot eat and therefore only live a few days. When people talk of seeing a glow-worm they normally mean the brightly glowing adult female.

In some countries, the numbers of glow-worms have been falling. Evidence suggests that there has been a steady decrease in the British glow-worm population since the 1950s and possibly before that. Possible causes for the decline include habitat destruction, pollution and changes in climate. Thousands of acres of grassland have been built upon and glow-worm sites have become increasingly isolated from each other. The widespread use of pesticides and fertilisers may also have endangered the glow-worm. Being at the top of a food chain it is likely to absorb any pollutants eaten by the snails on which it feeds. The effect of global warming on rainfall and other weather patterns may also be playing a part in the disappearance of glow-worms. A lot more research will be needed, however, before the causes of the glow-worm's gradual decline are clear.

Although glow-worms are found wherever conditions are damp, food is in good supply and there is an over-hanging wall, they are most spectacular in caves. For more than 100 years the glow-worm caves in New Zealand have attracted millions of people from all over the world. The caves were first explored in 1887 by a local Maori chief, Tane Tinorau, and an English surveyor, Fred Mace. They built a raft and, with candles as their only light, they floated into the cave where the stream goes underground. As their eyes adjusted to the darkness they saw myriad lights reflecting off the water. Looking up they discovered that the ceiling was dotted with the lights of thousands of glow-worms. They returned many times to explore further, and on an independent trip, Tane discovered the upper level of the cave and an easier access. The authorities were advised and government surveyors mapped the caves. By 1888 Tane Tinorau had opened the cave to tourists.

Questions 28-33

The passage has five sections labelled A-E.
Which section contains the following information?

Write the correct letter A-E in boxes 28-33 on your answer sheet.
NB. You may use any letter more than once.

28.  threats to the glow-worm  
29.  ways in which glow-worms have been used
30.  variations in type of glow-worm  
31.  glow-worm distribution  
32.  glow-worms becoming an attraction  
33.  the life-cycle of a glow-worm

Questions 34-40

Do the following statements agree with the information given in the passage.

In boxes 34-40 on your answer sheet, write

     TRUE    if the statement agrees with the information
     FALSE    if the statement contradicts the information
     NOT GIVEN    if there is no information on this

34.  Scientists have only recently been able to list the exact number of glow-worm species.  
35.  The first fireflies appeared 30 million years ago.  
36.  Glow-worm populations are decreasing faster in some countries than in others.  
37.  Heat affects the production of glow-worm larvae.
38.  Adulthood is the longest stage of a glow-worm's life.  
39.  The exact reason why glow-worm numbers are decreasing is unknown.  
40.  Glow-worms are usually found in wet areas.

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1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 Rating 3.40 (30 Votes)

Kamaldeep Singh
The answer is not from this line as you all mentioned. The answer to question 34 lies "Fireflies very similar to those we see today have been found fossilized in rocks which were formed about 30 million years ago, and their ancestors were probably glowing long before then. It is impossible to be sure exactly when and where the first Firefly appeared."

It says their ancestors were long ago which didn't mention the exact time. That is why it is NOT GIVEN.

Why is 34 'NG'? I thought it said that "The fireflies are a huge group containing over 2000 species, with new ones being discovered all the time."
... but the statement says - "exact number", and "over 2000 species" (in the text) is anything but the exact number!
Same problem here, but I think, it has something to do with "Scientists - "Over 2000 species are being discovered all the time by whom?" -- not mentioned. Could be kids, local residents, etc. Besides, the whole passage did not say a thing about scientists.
For Q. 43, shouldn't the answer be 'False' and not 'Not Given' since it has clearly stated in the second line that "...with new ones being discovered all the time."?
I also feel that it should be "False".
I feel that it should be False as it is mentioned: "new one discovered all the time".
37: Heat affects the production of glow-worm larvae. The answer should be FALSE instead of TRUE? (The egg usually takes about 35 days to hatch, but the exact time varies according to the temperature, from about 27 days in hot weather to more than 45 days in cold weather).
Bibek Pokhrel
The reason is because of the word 'AFFECTS', not 'EFFECTS' - 'Affects' could either be positive or negative, whereas 'effects' is negative. In this case, heat affects production positively.
Sumansh Jindal
I am with you.
Can anyone please tell me the justification for Q. 34? Shouldn't the answer be False, rather than NG, because initially, the topic says that "with new ones being discovered all the time."
Can I have the answers, please?
IELTS Mentor
This should work as well!!!
Use Microsoft OneNote. Copy from the start to the end area of interest. Then paste that into OneNote. That would maintain all the relevant pictures, font styles and fonts.
For this type of question, how many minutes should be allocated?
Q. 12, Can someone help me? I still don't find any connection to state subsidies.
5/5 in 12 minutes.
Kiran Reddy
We can write "true", too.
Sanjay Tyagi
The answer to the question 14 should be option 'a' (instead of True) :)
May I know what are the answers?
IELTS Mentor
You can either copy-paste or save the page from the 'File' menu to have the resources saved in your local drive.
Miguel Rivera
For question 13 = Like the gas-driven turbines that power jet aircraft, these are sophisticated pieces of rotating machinery. They are already highly efficient.
In the text, there is no information about the government subsidy to reduce the cost in any way. However, you can figure out other options that are mentioned to minimize the cost of wind power in the big paragraph. For question 12 it os okay. Read twice and figure out the meaning in the test. question 13 = read the first and second sentences in the last paragraph. If you can't figure out the answer you better quit IELTS from your head. It's easier enough.
Can't figure out how to find the solution for the 12th and 13th questions. What information in the passage contains the answer for these two questions?
Md. Naimul Islam
How can I download the material for practise?