Lyristes plebejus is a cicada found in most of Europe and middle-eastern Asia. There is an ongoing debate over its genus. Some say Lyristes, and some say Tibicen. I don’t have an opinion on the matter, but most folks in Europe say Lyristes plebejus, so I’m leading with that name.
Photo of an adult Lyristes plebejus by Iván Jesus Torresano GarcÃa:
Photo of a molting Lyristes plebejus by Iván Jesus Torresano GarcÃa:
Cicada orni is a cicada found in many European & Asian countries, including Spain, Turkey, Albania, Austria, Cyprus, Czechoslovakia, Egypt, France, Greece, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Lebanon, Romania, Switzerland, and Yugoslavia. It is also known as the Ash cicada.
Photo by Iván Jesus Torresano GarcÃa taken in Spain.
A video by Iván Jesus Torresano GarcÃa taken in Spain.:
Iván Jesús Torresano GarcÃa send us a dozens of cicada photos from Spain, where he resides. According to Iván June is a peak time for cicadas in Spain. Cicadas common to the area are: Cicada orni, Lyristes (old Tibicen) plebejus, Tettigetta argentata, Hilapura varipes, Euryphara contentei (miniature), Tibicina tomentosa, and finally the brownish “Barbara Lusitanica Cicada”.
It seems that there is a dispute as to whether the genus Tibicen should actually be called Lyristes. A petition was made (back in the 1980s) to the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature, to change Tibicen to Lyristes. I learned this from the wonderful new book, The Cicadas (Hemiptera: Cicadoidea: Cicadidae) of North America North of Mexico by Allen F. Sanborn and Maxine S. Heath (order it). I checked the ICZN website, and the petition appears to fallen off their docket of open cases. I also noticed that on European and Japanese websites, they use Lyristes.
I personally hope the genus name doesn’t change for North American species — I would have to make a lot of changes on this website. Going through the name change from Tibicen chloromera to Tibicen chloromerus to Tibicen tibcen, was bad enough.
The root of the word Tibicen is flute player, and the root of the word Lyristes is lyre — both referring to musical instruments. (Frankly I think most Tibicen sound like power tools — I don’t know Latin for Black & Decker).
BTW, this is a Lyristes plebejus (from Spain):
Photo by Iván Jesús Torresano GarcÃa.
And this is a Lyristes flammatus (from Japan):
Photo by Osamu Hikino
And some day, this might be a Lyristes auletes (from North Carolina):