Cicada Mania

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

June 28, 2022

Cicada Season Kicks off in New Jersey

Filed under: Leptopsaltriini | Neocicada — Tags: — Dan @ 6:00 am

Updating (9/8) with some photos of an adult male Hieropglyhic cicada.

Hieropglyhic cicada NJ 2022

Hieropglyhic cicada

Updating (6/28) with some more locations: Bass River Park (E Greenbrook Rd), Harrisville Pond, Franklin Parker preserve.

Cicada season started in New Jersey last week with the emergence and singing of Neocicada Hieroglyphica aka the Hieroglyphic cicada. I heard them in Brendan T. Byrne state park and Hammonton. Someone on our Instagram said he heard them in Vineland.

Cicadas.info which specializes in the cicadas of the Mid-Atlantic, has Hieropglyhic cicadas starting around June 8th — this makes sense because they’re found in Florida, as well as more northern states like New Jersey and New York (Long Island).

You can hear their high-pitched screams in this video:

Here is the molted skin of a Hieroglyphic cicada:
Hieroglyphic Cicada

May 12, 2022

Chremistica ribhoi, the World Cup Cicada, is emerging!

Filed under: Chremistica | Cryptotympanini | India | Periodical — 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

March 27, 2022

Megatibicen auletes singing at dusk in Brendan T Byrne State Park in New Jersey on July 15th 2021

Filed under: Cryptotympanini | Megatibicen | Sounds | United States | Video — Tags: — Dan @ 6:46 am

Here’s a video of a Megatibicen auletes cicada singing at dusk in Brendan T Byrne State Park in New Jersey on July 15th, 2021.

Neotibicen lyricen molting in New Jersey July 2021

Filed under: Cryptotympanini | Molting | Neotibicen | Nymphs | Teneral | United States — Dan @ 5:39 am

Here are some Neotibicen lyricen molting in New Jersey July 2021.

Rich caramel eyes; blues & pinks in pronotal collar, legs, and mesonotum; green wings (that will stay green) and orange abdomen.

Neotibicen lyricen New Jersey July 2021

Neotibicen lyricen New Jersey July 2021

Neotibicen lyricen New Jersey July 2021 02

Molting Neotibicen tibicen cicadas

Filed under: Cryptotympanini | Molting | Neotibicen | Teneral | United States — Tags: — Dan @ 5:10 am

Here’s some photos of Molting Neotibicen tibicen tibicen cicadas taken in New Jersey in July of 2021.

Neotibicen tibicen tibicen July 2021

Neotibicen tibicen tibicen July 2021

Neotibicen tibicen tibicen July 2021

Neotibicen tibicen tibicen July 2021

Neotibicen tibicen tibicen July 2021

Neotibicen tibicen tibicen July 2021

September 16, 2021

New tribe Ayuthiini

Filed under: Ayuthia | Ayuthiini | Distantalna — Dan @ 6:11 pm

The paper The molecular systematics and diversification of a taxonomically unstable group of Asian cicada tribes related to Cicadini Latreille, 1802 (Hemiptera : Cicadidae)1 has introduced a new tribe Ayuthiini, replacing Tosenini for two genera of cicadas: Distantalna and Ayuthia.

New Tribe Ayuthiina

1 Hill Kathy B. R., Marshall David C., Marathe Kiran, Moulds Maxwell S., Lee Young June, Pham Thai-Hong, Mohagan Alma B., Sarkar Vivek, Price Benjamin W., Duffels J. P., Schouten Marieke A., de Boer Arnold J., Kunte Krushnamegh, Simon Chris (2021) The molecular systematics and diversification of a taxonomically unstable group of Asian cicada tribes related to Cicadini Latreille, 1802 (Hemiptera : Cicadidae). Invertebrate Systematics 35, 570-601. https://doi.org/10.1071/IS20079

July 12, 2021

A new genus Vittagaeana and a new Cicada paper to go with it

Filed under: Gaeanini | Papers and Documents | Vittagaeana — Dan @ 12:51 pm

Recently a new paper was published with the authors Kathy B. R. Hill, David C. Marshall, Kiran Marathe, Maxwell S. Moulds, Young June Lee, Thai-Hong Pham, Alma B. Mohagan, Vivek Sarkar, Benjamin W. Price, J. P. Duffels, Marieke A. Schouten, Arnold J. de Boer, Krushnamegh Kunte and Chris Simon titled The molecular systematics and diversification of a taxonomically unstable group of Asian cicada tribes related to Cicadini Latreille, 1802 (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) in Invertebrate Systematics, 2021, 35, 570–601. Link to the paper.

Here’s the abstract:

Abstract. The cicadas (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) related to tribe Cicadini exhibit some of the most remarkable phenotypes in the family, with many genera possessing striking colour patterns and unusual morphological features. This largely Asian group of 13 tribes has proven challenging for cicada taxonomists, in part because of likely convergent evolution or losses of these phenotypes. We present the first focused molecular phylogeny of this clade, including ~60 described genera. The genetic dataset contains 839 ingroup-informative sites (out of 2575) from mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I, nuclear elongation factor-1 a, and nuclear acetyltransferase. We use Bayesian and maximum likelihood trees to test recent changes in tribe- and subtribe-level classification, and we reconstruct ancestral character states for potentially convergent traits influencing tribe descriptions. We use fossil and molecular clock calibrations to estimate the temporal and geographic context of the radiation. The tribes Gaeanini, Leptopsaltriini, Platypleurini, Psithyristriini, and Tosenini appear polyphyletic and in need of revision, in part because of convergent evolution of opaque wings and multiple convergent gains or losses of abdominal tubercles. Kalabita Moulton, 1923 is transferred from Platypleurini to Leptopsaltriini. Vittagaeana gen. nov. is established for Vittagaeana paviei comb. nov. and Vittagaeana dives comb. nov., formerly in Tosena. Sinosenini syn. nov. is synonymised with

As part of the paper, we get a new genus, Vittagaeana, made up of two cicadas formerly belonging to the genus Tosena. They were likely placed under Tosena because of the white line on their forewings, but after a review of genetics and other features, they have been given their own genus. They are closely related to the genera Ambragaeana, Callogaeana, Gaeana, Sulphogaeana and Trengganua. Also similar to Balinta, Paratalainga, and Talainga.

Vittagaeana dives (Westwood, 1842), formerly Tosena dives:
Tosena dives (Westwood, 1842)
More info: Vittagaeana dives (Westwood, 1842)

Vittagaeana paviei (Noualhier, 1896), formerly Tosena paviei:
Tosena paviei
More info: Vittagaeana paviei (Noualhier, 1896)

June 12, 2021

Okanagana aurantiaca Davis, 1917

Filed under: Okanagana | Tibicinini | William T. Davis — Tags: — Dan @ 8:57 am

Okanagana aurantiaca Davis, 1917.

From Davis’ 2020 Key

A. Male uncus not hooked at the extremity, sometimes sinuate.

B. Expanse of fore wings more than 50 mm.

CC. The base of the fore and hind wings not of the usual orange-red variegated with black.

Body and wing venation nearly entirely orange; basal cell of fore wings clear; a black band between the eyes, and a conspicuous dorsal band of the same color extending from the hind margin of the pronotum to the end of the abdomen.

Classification:

Family: Cicadidae
Subfamily: Cicadettinae
Tribe: Tibicinini
Subtribe: Tibicinina
Genus: Okanagana
Species: Okanagana aurantiaca Davis, 1917.

List of sources

  1. Davis, William T. Cicadas of the genera Okanagana, Tibicinoides and Okanagodes, with descriptions of several new species. Journal of the New York Entomological Society. v27. 179-223. 1919. Link.

June 8, 2021

Platypedia putnami survey at Horsetooth Mountain Open Space by Tim McNary

Filed under: Platypedia | Platypediini | Proto-periodical | Tim McNary — Tags: — Dan @ 6:12 pm

Here’s a short 2021 update for the Platypedia putnami survey at Horsetooth Mountain Open Space, west of Fort Collins, Colorado. 2021 is turning out to be a very large emergence for this cicada, and it’s not through yet! The survey transect goes from the trailhead parking lot to Horsetooth Falls. Although the first exuvia found was on May 22, 2021, the bulk of the exuvia, so far, have emerged (153 of 201 exuvia) June 5-8th. “Clicking” of adults can be heard in many areas, but is concentrated in certain sites.

Tim McNary
Fort Collins, CO

Here are the mega data on exuvia found each year:
2009- 136 exuvia
2010- 0
2011- 3
2012- 2
2013- 179
2014- 0
2015- 12
2016- 0
2017- 0
2018- 13
2019- 2
2020- 0
2021- 201 (exuvia through June 8, 2021)

Links:

January 16, 2021

Three new species of cicadas from Meghalaya, India

Filed under: Dundubiini | India | Mata | Vivek Sarkar — Dan @ 9:45 pm

Three new species of cicadas have been discovered in Meghalaya, India:
Mata meghalayana, Mata lenonia, and Mata ruffordii.

Mata cicadas  Vivek Sarkar
Photo courtesy of Vivek Sarkar.

Access the paper on Research Gate or Zootaxa Vol 4908, No 1.

Paper title: Description of three new species of the genus Mata Distant, 1906 (Hemiptera: Cicadidae: Cicadinae: Oncotympanini) with notes on their natural history from the Indian state of Meghalaya, India

Authors: Vivek Sarkar, Cuckoo Mahapatra, Pratyush P. Mohapatra, Manoj V. Nair, Krushnamegh Kunte

Abstract: “Three new species of the Asian genus Mata Distant, 1906 (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) viz. Mata lenonia sp.nov.; Mata ruffordii sp.nov. and Mata meghalayana sp.nov. are described from the Indian state of Meghalaya. Keys and taxonomic descriptions of these species are provided with detailed accounts of their natural history and acoustics.”

More »

Cicada T-shirts