Cicada Mania

The Cicada Mania Blog: News, Findings, and Discoveries About Cicadas.

October 5, 2013

13-Year Cicadas to Emerge in Ohio & Kentucky in 2014

We expect Magicicadas with a 13-Year life-cycle to emerge in Ohio & Kentucky, along the Ohio river, in 2014. This particular group of periodical cicadas last emerged in 2001 and 1988.

I know what you’re thinking: are these cicadas part of Brood XXII? Time and research will tell. Brood XXII emerges in Louisiana and Mississippi, which are geographically isolated from Ohio & Kentucky, so the two groups of cicadas are likely to be genetically distinct (belonging to different mitochondrial haplotype groups at least). That said, Brood II, which emerges mostly along the east coast of the U.S., also emerges in Oklahoma, which is geographically isolated from the rest of that brood. So, the Ohio/Kentucky cicadas could logically be part of brood XXII.

Back in 2001 Roy Troutman, Les Daniels and Gene Kritsky reported this group of cicadas to Cicada Mania. Les reported both cassini and decim.

My guess is these cicadas are somehow descended from Brood X or Brood XIV 17-year cicadas, and that if they are 13-year cicadas, there would be no M. neotredecim present in this brood.

I wrote Roy for a list of towns where these cicadas emerged in 2001, and he said:

Chilo, OH
Cold Springs, KY
Higginsport, OH
Neville, OH
New Richmond, OH
Point Pleasant, OH
Ripley, OH
Utopia, OH
Woodland Mound Park, Cinncinati, OH


View OH/KY 13 Year Brood in a larger map

For more information, contact Gene Kritsky.

June 8, 2013

Roy Troutman’s 2013 Brood II cicada photos

When Roy Troutman visited New Jersey last week he took a lot of great cicada photos. Here is a sample of the best.

Click these photos to see larger versions of the photos:

This first photo is particularly interesting, because you can see the Magicicada cassini in flight between their calls:

Magicicada cassini flying inbetween calling in Colonia NJ by Roy Troutman

Magicicada nymph:

Cicada Nymph by Roy Troutman

Magicicada undergoing ecdysis:

Magicicada undergoing ecdysis by Roy Troutman

M. septendecim:

M septendecim by Roy Troutman 2

Teneral Magicicada:

Teneral Magicada by Roy Troutman

Mustard-colored eyes:

Mustard eyed Magicicada septendecim by Roy Troutman

Magicicada with exuvia:

Magicicada with Exuvia by Roy Troutman

Magicicada mating:

Magicicada mating by Roy Troutman

Magicicada exuvia and corpses:

Magicicada corpses and exuvia by Roy Troutman

Magicicada staring at you:

Magicicada staring at you by Roy Troutman

Magicicada mating:

Magicicada septendecim mating by Roy Troutman

View all of Roy Troutman’s 2013 Brood II photos.

Five days of Cicada Mania

Two Wednesdays ago, May 29th, my friends Roy and Michelle Troutman arrived in New Jersey. Roy has been a cicada enthusiast since he was a child growing up in Ohio. Roy has contributed many photos and videos to cicadamania.com over the years. We met in Chicago for Brood XIII in 2007, and I visited his home in Ohio for Brood XIV in 2008. This year it was my turn to return the favor for Brood II, and Roy and Michelle drove out to New Jersey.

Wednesday night we drove up to Metuchen, New Jersey to check out the emergence there. We met up with Elias Bonaros, at my Mother’s home. This location was fantastic for cicadas back in 1996, so it was worth trying again in 2013. My Mother’s yard was loaded with hundreds of cicada nymphs, teneral cicadas and adults.

Thursday, May 30th, was a beach day for Michelle, and a cicada day for Roy and I. Roy and I drove to Middlesex county to meet up with Elias. Roy and I stopped at Roosevelt Park along the way. The groves of trees near the Plays in the Park building were filled with chorusing M. septendecim. The base of one tree was absolutely covered with discarded cicada exuvia (shells).

A mass of exuvia and corpses by Roy Troutman

He headed to the Thomas Edison Monument in Edison NJ. There we met Elias. At the monument, sounds of construction competed with cicada choruses, but it was easy to hear both M. septendecim and M. cassini. The burdock filled field across from the monument, was filled with teneral Magiciada.

We hit Merrill Park in Colonia next. The park had many examples of both M. cassini and M. septendecim. The highlights were the many M. septendecim with caramel colored eyes, a small pine with close to 100 teneral adults clinging to its base, and loud, synchronized M. cassini choruses.

Adult Magicicada on a pine tree by Roy Troutman

Next we headed to a very loud M. cassini chorusing center on Guernsey Lane in Colonia. There Elias and Roy experimented with making males call and change orientation by snapping their fingers (imitating a females wing snaps). This location is where the how loud (in decibels) do periodical cicadas get video came from.

Elias used his sharp ears to locate some M. septendecula in Iselin at the corner of Wood and Willow.

We stopped by Revere Blvd in Edison, which was a hot spot 17 years ago, not much luck in 2013, but the best find was a pseudo scorpion that has hitched a ride on a cicada.

Friday, May 31st, Roy, Michelle and I drove out to Staten Island, to the Staten Island Museum. Me met Ed Johnson, and enjoyed their fantastic cicada exhibit, including the cicada timeline which features me. The Staten Island Museum has the largest collection of cicada specimens in the U.S.A., including many of the extinct Tibicen bermudiana.

Staten Island Museum 17 Year Cicada Exhibit
Just one corner of the Staten Island Museum 17 year cicada exhibit.

We took the ferry to Manhattan for a visit to the American Museum of Natural History to see an exhibit that was using some of Roy’s cicada video. Coincidentally we exited the C line Subway that had a mosaic of a cicada.

Roy Troutman and Elias Bonaros at the Periodical Cicada display at the American Museum of Natural History by Michelle Troutman
Elias and Roy examining a periodical cicada display at the AMNH.

Roy Troutman and Elias Bonaros near cicada mosiac in subway
Roy and Elias under the subway cicada mosaic.

Then it was back to the Staten Island Museum for an event called The Joy of Six Legged Sex which was about insect mating behavior, specifically cicadas. John Cooley of Magicicada.org and Ed Johnson of the Staten Island Museum spoke. David Rothenberg was also in attendance.

The Joy of Six Legged Sex event at the Staten Island Museum
A sign for the event at the Staten Island Museum.

John Cooley and Ed Johnson speaking at the Staten Island Museum Six Legged Sex event by Roy Troutman
John Cooley (left) and Ed Johnson (right).

Saturday, June 1st, Roy and Michelle left for Ohio. Later that day I met up with John Cooley, Jin Yoshimura, David Rothenberg, the New York Times, and friends. Read about that adventure: David Rothenberg, John Cooley and the New York Times.

Sunday, June 2nd, back to Staten Island to meet Chris Simon and Elias. More about that adventure in these posts:

June 6, 2013

How loud (in decibels) do periodical cicadas get?

Last Thursday Roy Troutman, Elias Bonaros and I traveled around central New Jersey, looking for cicadas. They were not hard to find. Elias found a location in Colonia that had a particularly loud Magicicada cassini chorusing center. Using my camera and Extech 407730 40-to-130-Decibel Digital Sound Level Meter, I recorded the calls of these cicadas and how loud they can get. The quality of the video isn’t the best because it’s a camera, not a video camera, but it is good enough.

Magicicada cassini chorusing center peaking at 85db (on Vimeo):

Magicicada cassini chorusing center peaking at 85db from Cicada Mania on Vimeo.

Elias and Roy used finger snaps, mimicking the wing snaps of female cicadas, to trick the males into singing:

Magicicada cassini responding to fingersnaps (on Vimeo):

Magicicada cassini responding to fingersnaps from Cicada Mania on Vimeo.

We placed the M. cassini directly on the microphone and got calls as high as 109 decibels, in this video:

Magicicada cassini calling at 109db in Colonia NJ from Cicada Mania on Vimeo.

There were a few M. septendecim in the area as well. A Magicicada septendecim goes from a Court II to Court III call as soon as it crawls on the decibel meter, in this video.

Magicicada septendecim court 3 from Cicada Mania on Vimeo.

The cicada choruses in Central New Jersey have no doubt gotten louder since last week. Hopefully on Sunday I’ll get back out to Central Jersey or Staten Island and make some recordings.

May 22, 2013

Finneytown Ohio 17 year Cicada Acceleration

Filed under: Brood VI,Gene Kritsky,Roy Troutman — by @ 11:10 pm

Roy Troutman, Gene Kritsky and his wife Jess witnessed a Magicicada emergence in Finneytown Ohio tonight. It is believed that this could be an acceleration of a new Brood VI, or an eight year acceleration of Brood X.

From Roy:

We had an unexpected emergence in parts of the Cincinnati area last night & I got some pics with my new Canon t4i. Gene [Kritsky] & his wife Jess came out to witness it as well. I would say hundreds emerged in a very small suburb of Cincinnati called Finneytown. This could be 4 year acceleration of the new brood VI that Gene has been talking about verifying in 2017 or 8 year acceleration of Brood X.

Photos of these cicadas by Roy.

2013 Finneytown Cicada

May 11, 2012

Brood XIV decelleration observed by Roy Troutman

Here’s something neat. Roy Troutman discovered some Brood XIV Magicicadas emerging 4 years late in Ohio. That’s a “21 year cicada”. :)

Here’s a photo:


A Brood XIV Magicicada straggler, emerged 4 years late.

And a gallery of all these Brood XIV stragglers.

Gene Kritsky observed a similar unexpected emergence in 1995. See “The Unexpected 1995 Emergence of Periodical Cicadas (Homoptera: Cicadidae: Magicicada spp.) in Ohio”, Gene Kritsky and Sue Simon, Department of Biology, College of Mount St. Joseph, Cincinnati, OH. (OHIO J. SCI. 96 (1): 27-28, 1996). An excerpt from the article:

an excerpt from the article

August 7, 2011

Walker’s Cicada aka Tibicen pronotalis (aka T. walkeri, T. marginalis)

Filed under: Annual,Roy Troutman,Tibicen — by @ 7:24 pm

Roy Troutman sent us these amazing photos of a female Walker’s Cicada aka Tibicen pronotalis (aka T. walkeri, T. marginalis) taken in Batavia, Ohio. As you can guess by the various akas (also known as), the Tibicen pronotalis has been known by several species names in the past. Sometimes it takes cicada researchers a while to figure out that two different species are the same species (which is probably the case here). Tibicen pronotalis also sounds exactly like another species of Tibicen: Tibicen dealbatus. The major difference between the T. pronotalis and the T. dealbatus is the T. dealnatus has more pruinose than the T. pronotalis. Pruinose is the white, chalky substance that appears on the bodies of cicadas.

Walker’s Cicada is found in 18 mid-western and southern states. Read more about this pretty cicada on Bug Guide, and listen to its song on Insect Singers.

Tibicen pronotalis (aka T. walkeri, T. marginalis)

May 16, 2010

Brood XIV Straggler in Ohio

Filed under: Brood XIV,Roy Troutman — by @ 7:02 pm

Roy Troutman found this Brood XIV Magicicada straggler in the Cincinnati Ohio area this weekend. This cicada emerged 2 years after it should have. Amazing.

Brood XIV Straggler

June 20, 2009

Superb Tibicen superbus (formerly T. superba)

Filed under: Roy Troutman,Tibicen — by @ 11:28 am

Roy Troutman took some excellent Tibicen superbus (formerly T. superba) photos while visiting Texas.

Here’s a preview:

Tibicen superbus (formerly T. superba)

May 20, 2009

Brood XIV stragglers confirmed as well as Brood II

So, we already know that Brood II stragglers are emerging in places like North Carolina and Virginia. Brood II cicadas weren’t due until 2013, which means the Brood II cicadas emerging now are emerging 4 years ahead of schedule.

At the same time, Brood XIV stragglers are emerging in Ohio (Batavia, Ohio to be exact). Brood XIV emerged in full-force last year, which means some Brood XIV cicadas emerging now are emerging 1 year behind schedule.

If you compare the Brood II map and Brood XIV map you’ll see they don’t overlap. Hint: open each map in a different browser or browser tab and toggle between the two.

Here’s some pictures of the Brood XIV stragglers Roy Troutman found just tonight in Batavia, Ohio.

Brood XIV Straggler by Roy Troutman

Brood XIV Straggler by Roy Troutman

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