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November 4, 2017

Fiji 8-year periodical Nanai aka Raiateana knowlesi

Filed under: Fiji | Periodical | Raiateana | Tacuini (Cryptotympanini) — Dan @ 1:25 am

Fiji $100 note

This cicada will next emerge in 2025.

Update (11/4/2017): from Facebook, it looks like folks are finding them. Here’s an image.

Update (9/13/2017): the Nanai have begun to emerge! This cicada last emerged in 2009 in Nadroga-Navosa and Serua Provinces, and now again emerge in 2017. People in Fuji will be able to report sightings to nanai-tracker.herokuapp.com.

Notes from Chris Simon:

Early this morning I got the first Reports of the 8-year periodical Nanai emerging in Navosa, Fiji! Some people in that area had them for dinner.

This confirms earlier reports of the eight-year periodicity. There was some uncertainty because the original specimens were dated (1906) a year later than they would be if on the current 8-year schedule.

Duffels and Ewart (1988, The Cicadas of the Fiji, Samoa, and Tonga Islands, their taxonomy and Biogeograohy) noted that “Until recently the present species is only known from three males collected in “Fijii” in 1906 by C. Knowles.” Duffels was not able to describe them when he first saw the specimens because they were missing the male genitalia. After obtaining, “a series of females and two males” from Dick Watling and Andrew Laurie in 1986, Duffels was able to assign it to the genus Raiateana. There is one other species of Raiateana in Fiji, R. kuruduadua (two subspecies in Fiji and one in Samoa) but it is not periodical as far as we know.

You might be familiar with American periodical cicadas (Magicicada) and the World-cup synchronized Chremistica ribhoi of India, but Fiji has a periodical cicada too: the 8-year periodical Nanai cicada aka Raiateana knowlesi.

It also appears on Fiji’s $100 note.

There’s even a local legend about the cicada.

More information:

Thanks to Chris Simon of the University of Connecticut for this information.

More shots of the Fiji $100 note and the folder it comes in:

Fiji $100 note

Fiji $100 note

October 27, 2017

14 new species of grassland, woodland & scrubland Myopsalta cicadas

Filed under: Australia | L. W. Popple | Myopsalta — Dan @ 11:29 pm

Lindsay Popple published a new paper describing 14 new species of grassland, woodland & scrubland Myopsalta cicadas. Download it from Zootaxa.

Here are the particulars:

Volume: Zootaxa 4340 (1): 001—098; 2017.
Title: A revision of the Myopsalta crucifera (Ashton) species group (Hemiptera: Cicadidae: Cicadettini) with 14 new species from mainland Australia
Author: LINDSAY W. POPPLE

Abstract:

The genus Myopsalta Moulds is distributed throughout much of Australia. Previous studies have associated several undescribed species with the Myopsalta crucifera (Ashton) species complex. The present study informally divides the cicadas in the genus Myopsalta into two species groups. It provides a revision of the M. crucifera species group, which includes redescriptions of M. crucifera s. str. and M. mackinlayi (Distant). The identity of the latter species is further refined and attributed to material formerly presented under the name Myopsalta atrata (Goding & Froggatt). In addition to the redescriptions, 14 new species belonging to the M. crucifera species group are described, including M. albiventris n. sp., M. bassiana n. sp., M. chrysopedia n. sp., M. gordoni n. sp., M. leona n. sp., M. longicauda n. sp., M. majurae n. sp., M. melanobasis n. sp., M. parvula n. sp., M. platyptera n. sp., M. riverina n. sp., M. septa n. sp., M. umbra n. sp. and M. xerograsidia n. sp. A key to species in the genus Myopsalta is provided. Standard morphological descriptions and descriptions of calling songs unique to each species are included along with a discussion on different song types in the M. crucifera species group.

And the announcement from Twitter:

Visit Lindsay’s cicada website.

September 17, 2017

New species of Clinopsalta cicadas

Filed under: Australia | Cicadettini | Clinopsalta | L. W. Popple | Papers and Documents — Dan @ 9:36 pm

Lindsay Popple announced on Twitter that two new species of Clinopsalta cicadas have been described.

Links:

Sounds: Calling songs of Clinopsalta cicadas.

Journal Article: TWO NEW SPECIES OF CLINOPSALTA MOULDS (HEMIPTERA: CICADIDAE) AND ADDITIONAL DISTRIBUTION RECORDS FOR CLINOPSALTA ADELAIDA (ASHTON), WITH NOTES ON THEIR DISTINCTIVE CALLING SONGS. Popple and Emery, 2017. Rec. Aust. Mus. 69(4): 237—256

Abstract from the journal article:

Two new species are described in the genus Clinopsalta Moulds. Clinopsalta autumna sp. nov. exhibits a warm temperate distribution from south-east Queensland south to Goulburn and Nerriga in eastern New South Wales. Clinopsalta semilunata sp. nov. has a patchy distribution in southern Queensland from Binjour Plateau west to near Miles, south to Yelarbon State Forest and Durikai State Forest, both near Inglewood. In addition to the descriptions of these new species, further distribution records are provided for C. adelaida (Ashton), which extend its distribution from south-eastern South Australia and northern Victoria to inland central and northern New South Wales. The species of Clinopsalta are small—medium sized cicadas (< 20 mm body length) with distinctive calling songs of an intermediate frequency (c. 6 to 18 kHz). The temporal structures of the calling songs follow a similar pattern in each species, comprising an introductory rattle followed by a series of clicking phrases. The call is characteristically accompanied with bouts of prominent wing-snapping, except in one species (C. semilunata sp. nov.).

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)

A. 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.

Here’s a video from the YouTube:

Auritibicen kyushyuensis

Photo by Osamu Hikino
Photo by Osamu Hikino.

Hyalessa maculaticollis

Oncotympana Maculaticollis

Platypleura kaempferi

Platypleura kaempferi (Fabricius, 1794)
Photo by Osamu Hikino.

Tanna japonensis

A male Tanna japonensis
Photo by Osamu Hikino.

Euterpnosia chibensis

Euterpnosia chibensis photos by Osamu Hikino. Japan.
Photo by Osamu Hikino.

Yezoterpnosia nigricosta

Male Terpnosia nigricosta by Osamu Hikino
Photo by Osamu Hikino.

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:

July 5, 2017

The Dusk Singers

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

Filed under: David Marshall | Kathy Hill | Neotibicen | Papers and Documents | United States — Tags: — Dan @ 6:28 am

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:

March 25, 2017

New Cicada: Berberigetta dimelodica

Filed under: Africa (Continent) | Berberigetta | Cicadettini | Vera L. Nunes | Video — Tags: — Dan @ 10:24 am

Thanks to Vera L. Nunes for letting us know about a newly described/discovered cicada named Berberigetta dimelodica.

Berberigetta is also a new genus, belonging to the Tribe Cicadettini.

See and listen to it in this YouTube video:

The paper than describes the species is:

Gonçalo João Costa, Vera L. Nunes, Eduardo Marabuto, Raquel Mendes, Telma G. Laurentino, José Alberto Quartau, Octávio S. Paulo, Paula Cristina Simões. 2017. Morphology, songs and genetics identify two new cicada species from Morocco: Tettigettalna afroamissa sp. nov. and Berberigetta dimelodica gen. nov. & sp. nov. (Hemiptera: Cicadettini). Zootaxa. Vol 4237, No 3.

Link to the Zootaxa page for the document.

And here’s a quote of the Abstract:

Morocco has been the subject of very few expeditions on the last century with the objective of studying small cicadas. In the summer of 2014 an expedition was carried out to Morocco to update our knowledge with acoustic recordings and genetic data of these poorly known species. We describe here two new small-sized cicadas that could not be directly assigned to any species of North African cicadas: Tettigettalna afroamissa sp. nov. and Berberigetta dimelodica gen. nov. & sp. nov. In respect to T. afroamissa it is the first species of the genus to be found outside Europe and we frame this taxon within the evolutionary history of the genus. Acoustic analysis of this species allows us to confidently separate T. afroamissa from its congeners. With B. dimelodica, a small species showing a remarkable calling song characterized by an abrupt frequency modulation, a new genus had to be erected. Bayesian inference and maximum likelihood phylogenetic analyses with DNA-barcode sequences of Cytochrome C Oxidase 1 support the monophyly of both species, their distinctness and revealed genetic structure within B. dimelodica. Alongside the descriptions we also provide GPS coordinates of collection points, distributions and habitat preferences.

November 10, 2016

Twenty-two new species of cicada identified in Australia

Filed under: Australia | Max Moulds — Dan @ 6:28 am

A new paper was published that describes five (5) new cicada genera and twenty-two (22) species of cicadas in Australia.

The paper is Systematics and Phylogeny of the Australian Cicada Genus Pauropsalta Goding and Froggatt, 1904 and Allied Genera (Hemiptera: Cicadidae: Cicadettini), the authors are Christopher L. Owen and M. S. Moulds, and it was published by The Australian Museum.

You can download it from this page. The document is 83 pages long, and contains 6 color pages of the cicadas.

The new genera are:

  1. Atrapsalta n.gen. Includes 9 species.
  2. Haemopsalta n.gen. Includes 4 species.
  3. Falcatpsalta n.gen. Includes 1 species.
  4. Relictapsalta n.gen. Includes 1 species.
  5. Popplepsalta n.gen. Includes 12 species. Note that this genera is named for cicada researcher Lindsay Popple.

The new species are:

  1. Pauropsalta accola n.sp.
  2. Pauropsalta adelphe n.sp.
  3. Pauropsalta agasta n.sp.
  4. Pauropsalta confinis n. sp.
  5. Pauropsalta conflua n.sp.
  6. Pauropsalta contigua n.sp.
  7. Pauropsalta ewarti n.sp.
  8. Pauropsalta herveyensis n.sp.
  9. Pauropsalta juncta n.sp.
  10. Pauropsalta katherina n.sp. Note, this name is in honor of cicada researcher Kathy Hill.
  11. Pauropsalta kriki n.sp.
  12. Pauropsalta similis n.sp.
  13. Pauropsalta sinavilla n.sp.
  14. Atrapsalta n.gen. emmotti n.sp. Note, this name is in honor of naturalist Angus Emmott (thx Henry Cook)
  15. Atrapsalta n.gen. furcilla n.sp.
  16. Atrapsalta n.gen. vinea n.sp.
  17. Haemopsalta n.gen. flammeata n.sp.
  18. Haemopsalta n.gen. georgina n.sp.
  19. Palapsalta Moulds, 2012 palaga n.sp.
  20. Palapsalta Moulds, 2012 serpens n.sp.
  21. Popplepsalta n.gen. aeroides n.sp.
  22. Uradolichos Moulds, 2012 rotunda n.sp.

The paper was announced on Twitter by Lindsay Popple on Twitter:

November 2, 2016

New Cicada Photo Guide by Nathan Emery

Filed under: Australia | Books | Nathan Emery — Dan @ 5:34 am

Update 2: Listen to an ABC radio interview with Nathan.

Update: Nathan’s books are back from the press. Buy it online, or contact him via Twitter to get yours:

Nature photographer and cicada researcher Nathan Emery is working on a new book called “A Photo Guide to Common Cicadas of the Greater Sydney Region“. It is due out at the end of October, 2016.

August 31, 2016

An early start to Australia’s cicada season

Filed under: Australia | Cystosoma | Nathan Emery — Dan @ 5:56 am

Cicada researcher and photographer Nathan Emery found his first Bladder Cicada (Cystosoma saundersii) for the year. See this iNaturalist page. It is still winter there, so this is particular interesting.

A Bladder cicada looks like this (Cystosoma saundersii):

Bladder cicadas (Cystosoma saundersii)
Photo by David Emery.

Read more about this cicada on Dr. Pop’s website.

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