Cicada Mania

Dedicated to cicadas, the most amazing insects in the world.

October 10, 2009

Interesting Cicada items from Wenilton Luís Daltro

Filed under: Anatomy | Brazil | Quesada — Tags: — Dan @ 8:01 am

Wenilton Luís Daltro posted some interesting cicada items on our old the message board, and I wanted to post them on the homepage as well.

Quesada gigas song:

Cicada metamorphosis:

And,

Text PDF about brazilian cicadas, with photos.

August 9, 2009

Cicadas and bacteria

Filed under: Anatomy — Dan @ 7:43 pm

I saw quite a few articles this weekend about the discovery of bacteria that live within cicada cells that are they key to their long lives underground.

Here’s the Live Science article.

So how do cicadas gather the nutrients they need to survive, despite their low-nutrient diet? McCutcheon says that cicadas supplement their diet by maintaining complicated relationships with two species of specialized bacteria that live inside their cells. The bacteria produce essential nutrients for the cicadas that the animals neither receive from their sap diets nor produce themselves.

March 16, 2009

New Cicada Photos from Santisuk Vibul in Thailand.

Filed under: Anatomy | Thailand — Dan @ 8:25 pm

New Cicada Photos from Santisuk Vibul in Thailand.

New cicada photos from Santisuk Vibul’s in Thailand.

January 11, 2009

HD Cicada Videos from Roy Troutman

Filed under: Anatomy | Brood XIV | Magicicada | Roy Troutman | Video — Dan @ 7:36 pm

Here’s something special. Roy Troutman has uploaded some HD quality videos of Magicicadas to YouTube. Click the links to see the full-size versions.

Periodical Cicada sitting on leaf in HD:

Periodical Cicada’s heart pumping in HD:

Cicada molting in HD:

Here’s a Brood XIV Roy created as well:

Brood XIV Map by Roy Troutman

July 23, 2008

The Songs of Insects

Filed under: Anatomy | Books | Broods | Sounds — Dan @ 10:02 pm

Lately, we’ve received quite a few emails asking for audio samples of cicadas and katydids so folks can A) tell them apart, and B) tell what species they are. There’s plenty of sites on the web that feature cicada sounds; look for links tagged AUDIO on my cicada links page. Two particularly good sites for sound files Massachusetts Cicadas and Cicada Central.

In my search for good cicada and katydid sounds, many people recommended the book “The Songs of Insects” by Lang Elliott and Wil Hershberger. I ordered it immediately, and it arrived today. I am truly amazed by this book (and audio CD). The book profiles 75 North American singing insects including cicadas, katydids, crickets, and grasshoppers. Each profile features two excellent color photos of each insect, a map of where you can find them, a description, and the audio CD that includes the insect’s song. The book is over 225 pages long, and a high-quality paperback. If you or your kids are interested in signing insects, there’s no better book to buy. All my nieces and nephews are getting this book for Christmas.

The authors of the book have a webpage featuring the songs of the insects featured in the book. Note that the book is lacking in species found in the western U.S. — if you live east of the Rockies this book is awesome.

Listing for bugs is a fun thing to do in these hot summer months — buy this book before the summer ends.

5 Marvins 5 out of 5 Marvins.

The Songs of Insects by Lang Elliott and Wil Hershberger

July 5, 2008

A monograph of oriental cicadidae (1892) by Willian Lucas

Filed under: Anatomy | Oriental Cicadidae | Photos & Illustrations — Dan @ 3:13 am

I recently found a book called A monograph of oriental cicadidae in the Internet Archive. The A monograph of oriental cicadidae was authored by W. L. Distant, and published in 1892 — that’s 116 years ago! The book contains plenty of text and illustrations, some of which I’ll include below:

Angamiana etherea

Angamiana etherea

Cicada taglica

Cicada taglica

Cosmopsaltria tripurasura

Cosmopsaltria tripurasura

Peciliopsaltria hampsoni

Peciliopsaltria hampsoni

Terpnosia stipata

Terpnosia stipata

Tosena depicta

Tosena depicta

Tosena sibylla

Tosena sibylla

Tosena splendida

Tosena splendida

July 3, 2008

A look back at Brood XIV: Leaves w/Cicadas

Filed under: Brood XIV | Exuvia — Dan @ 7:54 am


Leaves w/Cicadas, originally uploaded by dcfox.

An excellent photo found on Flickr.

June 28, 2008

Do cicadas bite or sting?

Filed under: Anatomy | FAQs — Dan @ 12:03 pm

If you believe you’ve been bitten and you’re concerned, the best thing to do is to consult a doctor, not this webpage. 🙂

Technically cicadas don’t bite or sting; they do however pierce and suck. They might try to pierce and suck you, but don’t worry, they aren’t Vampires nor are they malicious or angry — they’re just ignorant and think you’re a tree. Just remove the cicada from your person, and go about your business. Cicadas also have pointy feet, egg-laying parts (ovipositors), and other sharp parts that might feel like a bite.

Cicadas don’t have jaws (mandibles) like a wasp, mantis, or ant, built to tear and chew flesh. Cicadas don’t have stingers, like bees and wasps, meant to deploy venom and paralyze or otherwise harm their victim. See a video of a Japanese hornet to see what I mean.

Cicadas obtain sustenance by drinking tree fluids, which are relatively watery compared to human blood. Drinking human blood would probably kill a cicada.

Caution: Don’t hold cicadas in a closed fist — you can hurt the cicadas, and they might try to drink from your hand meat.

(Reference these meme groups for more info Entomemeology and Wild Green Memes For Ecological Fiends).

Actual photo. Even with an open palm, they might take a taste!
Hand meat

Here is a video of a cicada that has confused my thumb for a juicy tree limb:

Magicicada trying to take a drink from Cicada Mania on Vimeo.

See if you can spot the cicadas’ sucker in this illustration:

Illustration from Marlatt

Here’s a photo of a cicada’s mouth parts:

cicada mouth part

There is also a chance that if you believe you’ve been bitten by a cicada, you might have been bitten by a Cicada Killer Wasp. The Cicada Killer Wasp is a large wasp that hunts cicadas, and usually can be found around cicadas or often attached to a cicada. Cicada Killer Wasps normally avoid humans, but if you mess with one, it might attack.

Tip of the day: If you want to avoid cicadas, don’t use power tools, drills, saws, lawn mowers, weed whackers, leaf blowers, etc. in their presence. Cicadas think the sound made by these tools and machines are other cicadas. Female cicadas want to mate with the male cicadas they think they’re hearing, and male cicadas want to compete. If you can, use these tools in the morning or close to dusk when the temperatures are cooler, and cicadas are less active.

June 18, 2008

Close up photos of marble-colored cicada eyes

Filed under: Brood XIV | Eye Color | Roy Troutman — Dan @ 8:51 pm

High-res versions of Roy Troutman’s marble-eyed cicada photos. Fascinating. You can see a color variation in all 5 eyes!

Upclose on Marble eyed 17 year cicada

Close up of marble eyed cicada

June 17, 2008

More totally awesome marble-eyed cicada photos

Filed under: Brood XIV | Eye Color | Roy Troutman — Dan @ 10:21 am

Roy has obtained another marble-eyed 17 year cicada found by Mike & Reed Finfrock of West Chester, Ohio.

Grey Red Marble Eyed Magicicada

Red Gray Marble eyed cicada

White eyes are unique, maybe one in 100,000, but these marble eyed cicadas seem to be even more rare. They look like the red was torn away, revealing the gray below (like something you would see on a blinged out Honda Civic or an 80’s metal guitar).

« Newer PostsMore »

Cicada T-shirts