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March 17, 2019

Lyristes plebejus or Tibicen plebejus?

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 García:
43 Tibicen plebejus molt sequence, photos by Iván Jesus Torresano García

Photo of a molting Lyristes plebejus by Iván Jesus Torresano García:

Scientific classification:
Family: Cicadidae
Subfamily: Cicadinae
Tribe: Cryptotympanini
SubTribe: Cryptotympanina
Genus: Lyristes or Tibicen
Species: Lyristes plebejus (Scopoli 1763) or Tibicen plebejus (Scopoli 1763)

According to iNaturalist this cicada is around between June and August. Peak in July.

View more photos of this cicada. Most photos by Iván Jesus Torresano García. There’s nearly 100.

For more information about this cicada, visit SONGS OF EUROPEAN SINGING CICADAS.


  1. Lynsie M Tolentino says:

    Are cicadas supposed to be just in Europe and eastern Asia. I just found the cacun for one in my yard.Louisiana

    1. Dan says:

      They are found on every continent but Antarctica.

      Here’s a list of all the species in Louisiana.

      1. Scott swayze says:

        I live in Texas and I found them is that common

  2. Dave says:

    Good call, because the International Commission on Scientific Nomenclature recently ruled on an old case about the priority of the generic names Lyristes and Tibicen, which share the same type species. They suppressed the priority of Tibicen, the older name, so now plebejus and any other species that were listed under Tibicen before this should be referenced under Lyristes. (Opinion 2475 –

    Note that all of the American and eastern Asian cicada species had been moved out of Tibicen before this. As far as I know, only European/western Asian species remain.

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