Cicada Mania

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

March 23, 2019

Platypleura hampsoni (Distant, 1887)

Platypleura hampsoni is a cicada found in India.

Platypleura hampsoni

Image and Description from A Monograph of Oriental Cicadas by W. L. Distant. 1889-1892. Read it on the Biodiversity Heritage Library website:

Male. Head luteous; front with a number of black linear markings; vertex with a transverse, narrow, black fascia between the eyes, and with a central black spot containing the ocelli. Pronotum greenish-ochraceous, the disk with the following black markings: — a central I-shaped spot, on each side of which are some oblique linear markings; the lateral dilated margins are black, and the anterior margin is narrow — and the posterior margin broadly— dull reddish ochraceous. Mesonotum greenish-ochraceous, with the following black spots: — four obconical from anterior margin, of which the central two are smallest; and a large, oblong, discal spot, with a small partly rounded spot on each side of it; the basal cruciform elevation dull reddish ochraceous. Abdomen above black. Head beneath, with the face black, marked with luteous transverse lines; sternum somewhat ochraceously pilose; abdomen beneath black, the segmental margins ochraceous, the anal appendage of the same color; legs castaneous, streaked or spotted with piceous and luteous. Rostrum black, the basal portion luteous.

Tegmina pale hyaline, with the venation brown, the costal membrane greenish, the basal third somewhat opaque, with darker transverse markings and small basal black markings; a double irregular series of dark brown spots cross the tegmina at about center, a dark brown fascia at bases of upper apical areas, a few small subapical spots and some small marginal spots of the same color. Wings brownish-ochraceous, paler at apex than at base and very pale across the center, with a white marginal spot near anal angle; the venation brown.

The rostrum reaches the basal abdominal segment; the lateral margins of the pronotum are distinctly angulated; the face is robustly gibbous, with a profound central longitudinal sulcation; the posterior tibijE have three distinct spines on each side of apical half.

Long. excl. tegm. 2 . 23 millim. Exp. tegm. 70 millim. ; exp. pronot. angl. 13 millim.

Hab. — Continental India : Neelgiri Hills, northern slopes, 3500 & 5000 feet (Hampson — coll. Dist.).

Scientific classification:
Family: Cicadidae
SubFamily: Cicadinae
Tribe: Platypleurini
Genus: Platypleura
Species: Platypleura hampsoni (Distant, 1887)

For more information about this cicada, visit Cicadas of India.

March 21, 2019

Platypleura mira Distant, 1904

Platypleura mira is a cicada found in Cambodia, Laos, Malasia, Thailand, and Vietnam.

Photo by Michel Chantraine:
Platypleura mira

Scientific classification:
Family: Cicadidae
SubFamily: Cicadinae
Tribe: Platypleurini
Genus: Platypleura
Species: Platypleura mira Distant, 1904

March 11, 2019

Platypleura capitata (Olivier, 1790)

Platypleura capitata is a cicada found in Sri Lanka and India.

Photos by Raghu Ananth, taken near Mysore, India:
Platypleura capitata Cicada Found Near Mysore, India by Raghu Ananth on tree

Platypleura capitata Cicada Found Near Mysore, India by Raghu Ananth on tree

Scientific classification:
Family: Cicadidae
SubFamily: Cicadinae
Tribe: Platypleurini
Genus: Platypleura
Species: Platypleura capitata (Olivier, 1790)

For more information about this cicada, visit Cicadas of India.

January 22, 2019

Platypleura coelebs Stål, 1863

Platypleura coelebs Stål, 1863, is a cicada found in India and China.

Platypleura coelebs was formerly known as Poecilopsaltria coelebs.

Scientific classification:
Family: Cicadidae
SubFamily: Cicadinae
Tribe: Platypleurini
Genus: Platypleura
Species: Platypleura coelebs Stål, 1863

Platypleura coelebs Stål, 1863

Species specimen description from A Monograph of Oriental Cicadas by W.L. Distant:

Head ochraceous; front, excluding a central spot, margins of vertex between front and eyes, and a transverse fascia between the eyes black; pronotum pale castaneous, the posterior and lateral margins ochraceous; mesonotum castaneous, with four large obconical black spots on anterior margin, the central two smallest, a central discal elongate black spot and a small black spot in front of each anterior angle of the basal cruciform elevation; abdomen black, the tympanal coverings, and the posterior segmental margins ochraceous. Head beneath, sternum, legs, rostrum and opercula ochraceous; a transverse fascia between the eyes — enclosing a pale spot on face — inner margins of eyes, posterior margin of face and apex of rostrum black: abdomen beneath castaneous, with the posterior segmental margins and the apes ochraceous.

Tegmina with about the basal half creamy opaque shaded with pale fuscous, and more or less outwardly defined by an indistinct curved pale fuscous fascia, remaining area hyaline, costal membrane and venation dark ochraceous, the transverse veins at the bases of the second, third, fourth, fifth and seventh apical areas slightly infuscated; wings stramineous for about two-thirds their area from base, this coloration outwardly margined with fuscous, remaining area pale hyaline, the venation dark ochraceous.

The rostrum extends a little beyond the inner angles of the opercula, which are somewhat well separated.

Long. excl. tegm. 22 to 23 millim. Exp. tegm. 64 to 68 millim. Exp. pronot. angl. 11 millim.

References:

  1. The illustration, description and location information comes from A Monograph of Oriental Cicadas by W. L. Distant. 1889-1892. Read it on the Biodiversity Heritage Library website.
  2. Species name information comes from Allen Sanborn’s Catalogue of the Cicadoidea (Hemiptera: Auchenorrhyncha).

October 6, 2018

Platypleura polydorus (Walker, 1850)

Platypleura polydorus (Walker, 1850). Found in Sub-Saharan, West, South and East Africa. Platypleura has a remarkable, angular pronotal collar like other members of the Platypleurini tribe.

Scientific classification:
Family: Cicadidae
SubFamily: Cicadinae
Tribe: Platypleurini
Genus: Platypleura
Species: Platypleura polydorus (Walker, 1850)

Platypleura polydorus (Walker, 1850)

Platypleura genus description by W. L. Distant:

Characters. — Body robust. somewhat short; abdomen in male about as long as space between apex of head and base of cruciform elevation; head broad, truncate anteriorly, including eyes a little or scarcely broader than base of mesonotum, ocelli about twice and sometimes thrice the distance from eyes as from each other, face moderately convex not prominent above; pronotum with the lateral margins ampliated or laminately medially angulate ; anterior femora not prominently spined; metasternum with a Central elevated plate-like process, which is centrally sulcated and posteriorly somewhat sinuately truncate; tympana practically concealed by the tympanal flaps or coverings; opercula in male short, broad, their apices more or less convexly rounded ; tegmina and wings either hyaline or more or less opaquely coloured, tegmina with the basal cell a little longer than broad, the coastal membrane only moderately dilated or arched at base, apical areas eight in number. Oxypieura, Amyot & Serville, merely includes species with hyaline non-opaque tegmina and wings: Pcecilopsaltria, Stal was regarded as distinct from Platypleura by the slightly greater width of the head including eyes ; this form being more dominant in the Oriental Region, while the character of typical Platy pleura is a marked feature in the Ethiopian species.

References:

  1. The illustration and genus description comes from the journal Genera Insectorum, and a specific article from 1913 by W. L. Distant titled Homoptera. Fam. Cicadidae, Subfam, Cicadinae. Read it on the Biodiversity Heritage Library website.
  2. Species name information/verification comes from Allen Sanborn’s Catalogue of the Cicadoidea (Hemiptera: Auchenorrhyncha).

July 9, 2017

Cicadas of Japan

Tibicen japonicus
Photo: Auritibicen japonicus by Osamu Hikino.

Cicada season in Japan, like North America, seems to be best from June to September, peaking in August. Different cicada species emerge at different times of the year, but the majority of them are active during the summer.

The best website for the cicadas of Japan that I’ve come across is Cicadae in Japan which is run by Y. Saisho who co-wrote the amazing The Cicadidae of Japan book & CD.

I don’t have too many photos of cicadas from Japan on this site, but here are some of the more well known (Genus names may have changed recently):

Auritibicen flammatus (formerly Tibicen flammatus, Lyristes flammatus)

Auritibicen  flammatus (formerly Tibicen flammatus, Lyristes flammatus)
Photo by Osamu Hikino.

Auritibicen japonicus (formerly Tibicen japonicus, Lyristes japonicus)

Male Auritibicen japonicus (formerly Tibicen japonicus, Lyristes japonicus)
Photo by Osamu Hikino.

Graptopsaltria nigrofuscata

Graptopsaltria nigrofuscata
Photo by Osamu Hikino.

More:

Cicadas are very popular in Japan, and they find their way into pop culture (Anime, live action kids shows like Ultraman). This photo features a cicada toy when spun, makes a sound, some cicada clicker toys, a plush Oncotympana, a Seminingen (bad guy from Ultraman), and Yotsuba a green-haired girl who has caught a cicada (Lyristes japonicus perhaps):

cicada related pop culture items from Japan

Cicada News & Photos

The best place, I’ve found, to keep track of which cicadas are out in Japan is Twitter. You can search Twitter yourself for セミ and you’ll find many results — most Tweets are references to pop culture, but occasional photos and actual information about actual cicadas.

These are many of the Twitter feeds I follow. You don’t need to belong to Twitter to view their feeds, but it’s more fun if you join.

Bonus:

Here’s a video of a Yezoterpnosia nigricosta taken by Elias Bonaros:

January 19, 2014

A visual comparison of some cicadas of Southeast Asia

This is a photo of one of my displays at home. Some of the specimens aren’t in the best shape, but it is good enough to distinguish the species.

Angamiana floridula, Becquartina electa, Gaeana cheni, Gaeana festiva, Platypleura mira, Tacua speciosa, Tosena albata, Tosena melanoptera, Tosena paviei, and Trengganua sibylla are featured in the image.

Cicadas of South East Asia

Click the image for a larger image.