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October 2, 2018

Pacarina puella Davis, 1923

Pacarina puella Davis, 1923 is a small cicada. About 2 centimeters, according to BugGuide.You can find this cicada in the several southern (United) States, Mexico, and Central America. It is commonly known as the Little Mesquite Cicada.

It’s also one of the cuter cicadas. See what I mean:

Pacarina puella Davis, 1923
Photo credit: Pacarina by by John Beard in Atascosa County, TX

Listen to its song on this page.

Scientific classification:
Family: Cicadidae
Sub Family: Cicadinae
Tribe: Fidicinini
Sub Tribe: Guyalnina
Genera: Pacarina
Species: Pacarina puella Davis, 1923

And its name has changed since 1914. It used to be known as Pacarina signifera (technically, its a synonym):

Pacarina puella Davis, 1923
The image says Pacarina signifera but the newest name of this cicada is Pacarina puella.

Pacarina genus description by W. L. Distant:

Characters. — Head (including eyes) broader than base of mesonotum ; eyes projecting beyond anterior angles of pronotum ; vertex at area of ocelli much longer than front ; pronotum with the posterior angles moderately lobately produced, its lateral margins oblique, slightly sinuate, its length shorter than that of mesonotum ; abdomen about as long as space between apex of head and base of cruciform elevation; tympanal coverings distinct but inwardly concavely narrowed and exposing the tympanal cavities; face convex, a little broader than the space between it and eyes; opercula about reaching base of abdomen, their lateral margins oblique, their posterior margins a little rounded; anterior femora armed with two strong spines beneath; rostrum about reaching the posterior coxae; tegmina and wings hyaline; apical areas eight.

References:

  1. The illustration comes from the journal Genera Insectorum, and a specific article from 1914 by W. L. Distant titled Homoptera. Fam. Cicadidae, Subfam, Gaeaninae. Read it on the Biodiversity Heritage Library website.
  2. Species name information/verification comes from Allen Sanborn’s Catalogue of the Cicadoidea (Hemiptera: Auchenorrhyncha).

May 14, 2018

Website highlight: Long Island Cicadas

Filed under: United States,Websites — Dan @ 8:36 pm

Long Island Cicadas is a blog about cicadas created and maintained by artist & photographer Annette DeGiovine.

Annette is a fantastic photographer and citizen scientist.

Long Island Cicadas

Here’s a sample of the articles on the blog.

November 26, 2017

A 3-Year Survey of Oklahoma’s 41 Cicadas

Filed under: Papers and Documents,Robert L. Sanders,United States — Dan @ 10:16 am

Cicada researcher Robert L. Sanders has written a paper documenting a 3-Year survey of Oklahoma cicadas. The paper is appropriately titled “A 3-Year Survey of Oklahoma Cicadas (Hemiptera: Cicadoidea: Cicadidae) with New State Records” and was published in Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society, 89(4):315-337. Access it via this link.

The number of cicadas identified living in Oklahoma has been raised to 41. The previous number, as documented in the works of Allen F. Sanborn and Polly K. Phillips, was 341.

Here’s the abstract of Robert’s paper:

ABSTRACT: Between September of 2013 and September of 2016 an intermittent survey of the cicada diversity and distribution in Oklahoma was conducted. The results of this survey are presented here as a current updated annotated checklist. Seven species in four genera are newly recorded as resident in Oklahoma: Diceroprocta texana (Davis, 1916), Megatibicen figuratus (Walker, 1858), Neotibicen davisi harnedi (Davis, 1918), Neotibicen linnei (Smith & Grossbeck, 1907), Neotibicen robinsonianus (Davis, 1922), Okanagana viridis Davis, 1918, and Pacarina shoemakeri Sanborn and Heath, 2012. This brings the total number of species inhabiting the state to 41. Discussed are seven additional species possibly occurring in the state and Oklahoma’s cicada diversity.

1 Sanborn Allen F. Phillips, Polly K. (2014). Biogeography of the Cicadas (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) of North America, North of Mexico. Diversity 2013, 5, 166-239; doi:10.3390/d5020166

July 5, 2017

The Dusk Singers

Filed under: Annual,Megatibicen,Neotibicen,United States — Dan @ 9:17 pm

The Dusk Singers

Dusk is the time of day between sunset and night. Many species of Megatibicen & Neotibicen (formerly Tibicen) sing at this time. I’m not sure why they sing at this time — perhaps it helps them avoid audio competition with other singing insects, or perhaps it helps them avoid predators by calling at this specific time of the day.

If you find yourself outdoors in the eastern half of the U.S. after sunset and hear a cicada call, it is likely one of the following Megatibicen or Neotibicen species:

Megatibicen

Megatibicen are LARGE and LOUD cicadas.

Megatibicen auletes aka the Northern Dusk Singing Cicada. This cicada can be found in these states: AL, AR, CT, DE, DC, FL, GA, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, MD, MA, MI, MS, MO, NE, NJ, NY, NC, OH, OK, PA, SC, TN, TX, VA, WV, WI. Season: July to Fall.

M. auletes Call*:

Megatibicen figuratus aka the Fall Southeastern Dusk-singing Cicada. Found in: AL, AR, FL, GA, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN, TX, VA. Season: July to Fall.

M. figuratus Call*:

Megatibicen resh aka Resh Cicada aka Western Dusk Singing Cicada. Found in: AR, KS, LA, MS, NE, OK, SC, TN, TX. Season: July to Fall.

M. resh Call*:

Megatibicen resonans aka Southern Resonant/Great Pine Barrens Cicada aka Southern Dusk Singing Cicada. Found in AL, FL, GA, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN, TX, VA. Season: July to Fall.

M. resonans Call*:

Neotibicen

Medium-sized, green cicadas with calls that sound like the rhythmic grinding of a scissor on a sharpening wheel (not a common tool in the 21st century).

Neotibicen pruinosus pruinosus aka Scissor(s) Grinder. Found in AL, AR, CO, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, MI, MN, MS, MO, NE, OH, OK, SC, SD, TN, TX, VA, WV, WI. Season: June – September. Neotibicen pruinosus fulvus aka Pale Scissor(s) Grinder Cicada. Found in: KS, OK. Season: June – September.

N. pruinosus Call*:

Neotibicen winnemanna aka Eastern Scissor(s) Grinder. Found in AL, DE, DC, GA, KY, LA, MD, MS, NC, NJ, PA, SC, TN, TX, VA, WV. Season: June – Fall.

N. winnemanna Call*:

*Audio files are Copyright of InsectSingers.com. Season information gathered from BugGuide.net.

May 31, 2017

Neotibicen similaris apalachicola, a new cicada subspecies

A new subspecies of the Similar Dog-Day Cicada has been described in the paper A new Neotibicen cicada subspecies (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) from the southeastern USA forms hybrid zones with a widespread relative despite a divergent male calling song by David C. Marshall and Kathy B. R. Hill (Zootaxa, Vol 4272, No 4). The cicada is named Neotibicen similaris apalachicola.

This cicada lives in Florida, Georgia & Alabama, and hybridizes with the other Similar Dog-Day Cicada sub-speces, Neotibicen similaris similaris. The document is available on biotaxa.org.

A morphologically cryptic subspecies of Neotibicen similaris (Smith and Grossbeck) is described from forests of the Apalachicola region of the southeastern United States. Although the new form exhibits a highly distinctive male calling song, it hybridizes extensively where it meets populations of the nominate subspecies in parapatry, by which it is nearly surrounded. This is the first reported example of hybridization between North American nonperiodical cicadas. Acoustic and morphological characters are added to the original description of the nominate subspecies, and illustrations of complex hybrid song phenotypes are presented. The biogeography of N. similaris is discussed in light of historical changes in forest composition on the southeastern Coastal Plain.

You will find song samples and maps on the Insect Singers website.

I think this is an image of the new cicada:

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