Cicada Mania

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

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Cicadas have three types of life cycles: annual, periodical, proto-periodical.

October 17, 2023

Roy Troutman’s 2013 Brood II cicada photos, gallery 2

When Roy Troutman visited New Jersey and New York in 2013 for Brood II he took a lot of great cicada photos.
Here is a sample of the best.
Click the images for a larger version.
Visit Gallery #1 and Gallery #3 as well.

John Cooley and Ed Johnson speaking at the Staten Island Museum Six Legged Sex event by Roy Troutman
John Cooley and Ed Johnson speaking at the Staten Island Museum Six Legged Sex event by Roy Troutman

Light Up Cicada Sculpture at the Staten Island Museum by Roy Troutman
Light Up Cicada Sculpture at the Staten Island Museum by Roy Troutman

Magicicada septendecim by Roy Troutman
M. septendecim by Roy Troutman

Magicicada cassini flying inbetween calling in Colonia NJ by Roy Troutman
Magicicada cassini flying inbetween calling in Colonia NJ by Roy Troutman

Magicicada cassini in flight in Colonia NJ by Roy Troutman
Magicicada cassini in flight in Colonia NJ by Roy Troutman

Magicicada corpses and exuvia by Roy Troutman
Magicicada corpses and exuvia by Roy Troutman

Magicicada mating by Roy Troutman
Magicicada mating by Roy Troutman

Magicicada exuvia by Roy Troutman
Magicicada exuvia by Roy Troutman

Magicicada septendecim mating by Roy Troutman
Magicicada septendecim mating by Roy Troutman

Magicicada staring at you by Roy Troutman
Magicicada staring at you by Roy Troutman

October 3, 2023

Fall Magicicada cassini straggler found in Park Ridge, IL

Filed under: Brood XIII | Magicicada | Periodical Stragglers — Tags: — Dan @ 10:22 am

Mary Rotter Fullerton found, or rather heard and recorded, a Brood XIII Magicicada cassini straggler on October 2nd, 2023, in Park Ridge, Illinois! This cicada emerged 7 months early!

Listen to the edited file (volume increased, background noise removed):

There are squirrel sounds in the mix as well.

Mary says:

Very cool, I have never heard one in fall. It was in a 50-year old maple tree that hosted many stragglers (early Brood XIII?) this past spring of 2023. Park Ridge, IL.

Spectrogram:
Mary Rotter Fullerton

David Marshall of InsectSingers.com confirmed that this is indeed a Magicicada cassini.

David says:

Yes to me that’s unquestionably a set of cassini calls. There are some literature records of autumn Magicicada, sometimes with speculation that it’s related to sudden late-season warmups.

It looks like there’s been quite a few fall stragglers, according to the Magicicada Straggler project on iNaturalist.

May 27, 2023

2023 Magicicada straggler update

Filed under: Brood X | Brood XIII | Brood XIV | Brood XIX | Magicicada | Periodical — Dan @ 6:49 am

Updated for June 7th!

Here’s a map of 2023 Magicicada straggler sightings from 2023 Magicicada stragglers iNaturalist project and the Cicada Safari app. Dr. Gene Kritsky compiled the map.

Kritsky map June 7

It looks like there are plenty of stragglers from these broods:

Learn about Magicicada stragglers.

April 13, 2023

Brood XIII and Brood XIX Magicicada will both emerge in 2024

Filed under: Brood XIII | Brood XIX | Periodical — Dan @ 9:42 am

News! A Brood XIX straggler has emerged in Georgia! More stragglers have been sighted in Hartselle AL, Pittsboro, NC, Chattanooga, TN, Asheboro, NC, and Chapel Hill, NC.

2024 will be a “magical” year for cicada fans because the periodical cicada broods XIII and XIX will emerge in 2024. These broods co-emerge every 221 years (13 X 17). The last time they co-emerged was in 1803, the same year as the Louisiana Purchase (the same year the U.S. got Brood XIX states Louisiana, Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma). Coincidence? Perhaps.

Thomas Jefferson thinking of the cicadas he just bought.

Brood XIII (13) has a 17-year lifecycle and is found in the states of IA, IL, IN, MI, and WI. This brood features the species Magicicada septendecim, Magicicada cassini, and Magicicada septendecula.

People (cicada tourists) have begun to ask “Where is the best place to see Brood XIII in 2024?”. I can recommend the Ryerson Conservation Area in Deerfield, IL. See photos and videos from my trip there in 2007. Illinois has both Brood XIII and Brood XIX, and all 7 Magicicada species. So you could spend a week in southern Illinois for Brood XIX and then travel north to Deerfield for Brood XIII.

Brood XIX (19) has a 13-year lifecycle and is found in the states of AL, AR, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MD, MO, MS, NC, OK, SC, TN, and VA. This brood is also known as the Great Southern Brood and features the species Magicicada tredecim, Magicicada neotredecim, Magicicada tredecassini, and Magicicada tredecula.

Do these broods overlap? If they do, it’s in the Springfield, Illinois area. Springfield is a good place for your cicada sightseeing “basecamp”. Take a look at these maps on the UCONN Cicadas website: Brood XIX and Brood XIII.

Your next chance to see and hear two broods co-emerge will be in 2037 when Brood XIX and Brood IX (9) emerge.

May 12, 2022

Chremistica ribhoi, the World Cup Cicada, is emerging!

Filed under: Chremistica | India | Periodical | Tacuini (Cryptotympanini) — Tags: — Dan @ 4:33 am

Chremistica ribhoi, aka Niangtasar and the World Cup Cicada, is emerging! Chremistica ribhoi is a periodical cicada that lives in India (state of Meghalaya) and emerges every four years. It is nicknamed the World Cup cicada because it emerges the same year as the World Cup soccer/football sports event.

Sudhanya Ray Hajong sent us the following photos and text describing the event:

A molted, teneral (soft) male:
a newly emerged teneral adult of C.ribhoi

The worldcup cicada emergence May 2022

The four year long wait is over for the young and old of the villagers of Saiden village in the
northeastern Indian state of Meghalaya, and if you happen to be around you not fail to
notice the excitement among the young and old, men and women here in Saiden . It is
beginning of May and the World cup cicada or ‘Niangtaser’ as is called by the Bhoi
community has started emerging. The forest of Iewsier located on this a remote corner of
the world is suddenly buzzing with the calls of thousands of ‘Niangtaser’ or Chremistica
ribhoi Hajong & Yaakop, 2013.

Come sunset, one will see young children, boys and girls, and even aged man and
women with a bag carried around their shoulder, a piece of bamboo cane hung by tread
around their neck and a torch in hand – they are conversing in excitement and flocking in
small groups proceeding on trails taking them inside the forest. The atmosphere is almost
festive and everyone is so friendly and smiling expecting eagerly to seek out and pick as
many ‘ Niangtaser’ as possible, to be brought back home for delicious preparation and to
be pickles and dried and kept for months to relish the unique taste that Mother nature has
bestowed.

The nymphs with their powerful forelegs silently dig over ground in the stillness of the
night and one can see the still freshly emerged nymphs covered in soil crawling sluggishly
seeking anything upright to cling upward until they can secure themself on the surface with
their claws, the slow process then begins, with the splitting of the thoracic integument
along the mid dorsal line, the adult gradually pushes out of the shell until they are fully
outside the old exuviae, the wings which were crumpled slowly unfold and the now fully
emerged teneral adult with their fully spread-out wings appear as a beautiful greenish
ethereal glow under the soft light of our headlamps.

Come daylight and the adults now in hundreds and thousands fly out resting in clusters on
tips of twigs and branches of the several bamboos, one would hear the incessant and
almost whistling crescendo of calls of the ‘Niangtaser’ with the rising heat of the sun if you
are just below these trees one would feel the rain like shower drizzling earthward from the
hundreds of adults peeing from the tree tops.

This year though the fear of a fresh COVID resurgence had dampened the spirit of the
villagers of Siden , as no ‘Niangtaser’ Festival could be organised with much fanfare like
the previous emergence years.

The Folklore of the Bhoi people – A sick old women who was transformed into the
peeing ‘Niangtsers’

Long ago as the Bhoi Khasis of Siden village traditionally believed that, there lived an old
women who suddenly fell sick with a strange stomach ailment that made her to go
frequently to calls of nature for her frequent watery discharge. Fearing that her ailment
would spread among the villagers, the village elders finally decided that she was to taken
to the forest and kept separated alone in a bamboo thatch until she could get herself
cured. It is said that, when the villagers next morning went to check on her with food and
water, they were surprised to find they she had strangely vanished, but surprisingly they
found thousands of the cicadas everywhere on the branches of the trees and strangely all
of them were found to be discharging some kind of fluid from the rear of their abdomen.
They were thus lead to believe that the forest sprit feeling pity on her had transformed the
old sick women into thousands of the cicadas, and to this day the old women appear
around the forest of Iewsier in the form of thousands of ‘Niangtasers’ and even now she
still suffers from her stomach ailment and pass frequent watery discharges from the top of
trees.

Will the ‘Niangtaser’ come again and again, after every four years, few village the elders
who narrates how once upon a time ‘Niangtaser were plentiful and widespread; and how
now things have changed and how forest were gone along with many areas from were
‘Niangtaser’ are no more found. They are saddened by this development and tells us that
the number of ‘Niangtaser’is dwindling, forest patches where large number of them
emerges are no longer there, in its place farmlands and houses had appeared, they fear it
is not far when the folklore and the ‘Niangtaser’ that is so relished will vanish and only
remain a folklore of the distant past. The unique gift of mother nature may no longer be
there if we do not check our greed and our want for more and more land and more
material wealth. Village elders like Bah Kret Sungkli caution us that if we do not part our
greedy ways we may have to lose this wonderful gift of mother nature.

By Sudhanya Ray Hajong with able field assistance from my dear Rodeson Thangkiew,
who was inspired by ‘Niangtaser’ and to take up his PhD in cicadas.

A poem by Sudhanya Ray Hajong:
Niangtaser poem

Two nymphs that have emerged from the ground:
nymphs of C.ribhoi just emerges and covered with soil

A molting adult:
emerging adult

A molting adult:
side view of teneral adult with a termite attracted to our headlamp

A molting adult:
teneral adult in process of emergence

There’s also a brood of C. ribhoi that emerges during Leap-years.

May 8, 2022

Magicicada stragglers found in 2022

Filed under: Magicicada | Periodical Stragglers — Dan @ 7:26 am

Here’s the latest map of stragglers from Gene for June 1st:

June 1 map

Gene Kristsky let us know that people are finding Magicada stragglers and reporting them on iNaturalist. It looks like most of the stragglers are in the Brood XIX area currently, but as temperatures warm, we might see others from other Broods.

Be on the lookout in 2022 (or any year)! Any place you see a red dot is a possibility. Even central Massachusettes (former home of Brood XI) and Ontario — maybe so.

Possbile Straggler Locations

Straggler-related facts:

What is a Magicicada:
A Magicicada is a genus of cicada that lives in the United States that typically emerges in 17 or 13-year cycles depending on the species.

They look like this:
Brood X header

What is a Brood:
A Brood is a numbered group of Magicicada cicadas that emerge in a specific series of years.
Example: Brood X (X is the Roman numeral for 10) emerges every 17 years, i.e. 2021, 2038, 2055, etc.

What is a Straggler:
A Straggler is a Magicicada that emerges earlier or later than anticipated.
Example: If a Brood XIX (13-year, next due in 2024) cicada emerges in 2022, we can say it is a straggler that emerged 2 years early.
Stragglers that emerge earlier than expected have also been called “precursors” (Marlatt 1898). I also call them “pioneers”.

January 30, 2022

Cicada Life Cycle

Filed under: Life Cycle — Dan @ 12:57 pm

Cicada Life Cycle
Top row, left to right: cicada egg (Roy Troutman), freshly hatched nymph (Roy Troutman), second and third instar nymphs (Elias Bonaros). Bottom row, left to right: fourth instar nymph, teneral adult, adult. (Cicada Mania).

Cicadas begin life as a rice-shaped egg, which the female deposits in a groove she makes in a tree limb, using her ovipositor. The groove provides shelter and exposes the tree fluids, which the young cicadas feed on. These grooves can kill small branches. When the branches die and the leaves turn brown, it is called flagging.

Once the cicada hatches from the egg it will begin to feed on the tree fluids. At this point, it looks like a termite or a small white ant. Once the young cicada is ready, it crawls from the groove and falls to the ground where it will dig until it finds roots to feed on. It will typically start with smaller roots of grasses and work its way up to the roots of its host tree. The cicada will stay underground from 2 to 17 years depending on the species. Cicadas are active underground, tunneling, feeding, and not sleeping or hibernating as commonly thought. Cicadas go through multiple phases, called instars, while underground. Magicicada have five instars.

After the long 2 to 17 years, cicadas emerge from the ground as nymphs. Nymphs climb the nearest available vertical surface (usually a plant) and begin to shed their nymph exoskeleton. Free of their old skin, their wings will inflate with fluid (hemolymph) and their adult skin will harden (sclerotize). Once their new wings and body are ready, they can begin their brief adult life.

Adult cicadas, also called imagoes, spend their time in trees looking for a mate. Males sing (or otherwise vibrate the air or their surroundings), females respond, mating begins, and the cycle of life begins again.

Different Types of Cicada Life Cycles

Filed under: Life Cycle — Dan @ 12:22 pm

There are three types of cicada life cycles:

Annual: Cicada species with annual life cycles emerge every year, for example, Swamp Cicadas (Neotibicen tibicen) emerge every year in the United States, and Green Grocers (Cyclochila australasiae) emerge every year in Australia.

Periodical: Cicadas species with periodical life cycles emerge together after long periods of time, for example, Magicicada septendecim will emerge every 17 years (Find out where they’ll emerge next). Magicicada periodical cicadas are organized into Broods, which correspond to the series of years in which they will emerge. Only periodical cicadas are organized by Roman-numeral Broods.

Protoperiodical: Cicada species with protoperiodical life cycles might emerge every year, but every so many years they emerge together in large numbers, like certain Okanagana depending on factors like proximity to other species and rainfall accumulations (Chatfield-Taylor 2020).

January 10, 2022

Meanwhile… Brood I

Filed under: Brood I | Periodical — Dan @ 9:44 pm

If you’re a Brood I cicada, you’re probably instar 4.

10 years ago meme (which is a thing in January of 2022):
10 year meme

July 7, 2021

Brood X Magicicada photos by Jim Occi taken in Princeton, set 6

Filed under: Brood X | Jim Occi | Magicicada | Periodical — Dan @ 4:33 am

Brood X Magicicada photos by Jim Occi taken in Princeton, set 6. 2021.

Teneral Magicicada:
Teneral Magicicada

Teneral Magicicada:
Teneral Magicicada

Magicicada septendecim that failed to completely exit its exuvia before its body hardened:
Magicicada Jim Occi

Magicicada septendecim that failed to completely exit its exuvia before its body hardened:
Magicicada Jim Occi

A pair of Magicicada septendecim:
A pair of Magicicada Jim Occi

More from Jim Occi:

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