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February 28, 2024

Cecily Cicada, a cicada book for kids

Filed under: Books — Dan @ 1:01 am

Update (2/28/2024): looks like there’s a 2024 version of Cecily Cicada: Cecily Cicada: Special Double Brood Edition.

Cecily Cicada 2024

There’s a new version of the book Cecily Cicada by Kita Helmetag Murdock & Patsy Helmetag for 2021. Some of you might remember the original version with the purple cover. Look for the mini-interview at the end of the article.

A delightful book, written by a mother/ daughter before the 17-year cicada emergence of 2004. They wrote it to ease the insect anxiety of their 3-year-old granddaughter/daughter when they learned the cicadas were coming. It tells the miraculous life of a special 17-year cicada named Cecily in an endearing way. Beautifully illustrated and fun. Patsy Helmetag has re-illustrated the original edition for a bright new look for the cicada emergence of 2021.

Cecily Cicada 2021 cover
Here is a Q & A with the authors of the book by Kita Helmetag Murdock & Patsy Helmetag:

Q: What inspired you to write a book about a cicada?

Kita: My mom and I originally wrote Cecily Cicada in 2004, when the Brood X cicadas were about to emerge in Washington, D.C. My then two-year-old daughter was terrified of all bugs, and I was terrified of how she would react when her world was suddenly full of them! We were driving to visit my sister in North Carolina that spring when we had the idea to write a book to ease her fears. Without anything to write on (and without smartphones – times have changed!), we started by writing the first lines in rhyme on the back of a cereal box. By the time we returned home from the trip, we knew we had a book that we wanted to share with all the kids who would be experiencing the cicadas that spring. My mom made the illustrations, and we put the book out into the world. We updated the book for the 2021 Brood X emergence.

Q: Has anyone approached you to make your book into an animated cartoon?

Kita: No, but we wish someone would! It would make a great animated short.

Q: What changes have you made for the 2021 edition of your book?

Patsy: I had so much time during covid that I decided to update all of the illustrations. The new version is brighter and more detailed. We also changed the male singing cicadas to a boy band, from a barbershop quartet, to make them more youthful.

Q: Have you written any other books?
Patsy: I have also written The TransAm Grannies Bicycle Across America and Slothy and Nomi. This past year, during quarantine, I illustrated and co-wrote Squeakestered with my 12-year-old granddaughter.

Kita: I have also written two middle-grade fiction books, Future Flash and Francie’s Fortune.

February 1, 2024

New Brood XIX and XIII Cicada Book by Dr. Gene Kritsky

Filed under: Books | Brood XIII | Brood XIX | Magicicada | Periodical — Dan @ 8:14 am

Cicada researcher and communicator Dr. Gene Kritsky has a new book about Brood XIX and XIII which are both emerging in the spring of 2024: A Tale of Two Broods: The 2024 Emergence of Periodical Cicada Broods XIII and XIX. It is available in paperback and Kindle formats.

A Tale of Two Broods: The 2024 Emergence of Periodical Cicada Broods XIII and XIX

Other posts about Dr. Gene Kritsky on this site:

  1. An Interview with Gene Kritsky
  2. Gene Kritsky’s new cicada site and Brood XIV news
  3. Periodical Cicadas: The Brood X Edition by Gene Kritsky
  4. Gene’s App: Cicada Safari app for tracking Magicicada periodical cicadas

January 29, 2024

Cicada Madness, a new cicada-themed fly fishing book

Filed under: Books | Fly Fishing — Dan @ 9:50 pm

Cicadas are a favorite food of fish, so anglers use lures that emulate cicadas. When there is a large emergence aka “hatch” of cicadas, it can drive the fish into a feeding frenzy, which anglers take advantage of.

There’s a new book called Cicada Madness by author Dave Zielinski that focuses on “timing, fishing techniques, and patterns for cracking the code of epic emergences”. The book features images by myself, Roy Troutman, and others. The book is 164 pages long and features 39 pages of fly patterns.

cicada madness

January 25, 2024

Okanagana & Platypedia of Flaming Gorge Reservoir, Utah

CGWiber of the Dutch John Resort of Flaming Gorge Reservoir, Utah, sent us these cicada photos. CGWiber enjoys fly fishing and “matching the hatch”, which means using fly fishing lures that match the characteristics of cicadas. Cicadas are a favorite food of game fish like trout. They can have years of great abundance. You’ll find them near water because there is more vegetation near water, which is why fish get ahold of them.

Okanagana cicada. It looks like Okanagana magnifica, but I’m not sure.
Okanagana

Okanagana cicada. Looks like Okanagana magnifica. It is about the length of two human phalanges:
Okanagana

Platypedia cicada.
Platypedia

Platypedia cicada. See how tiny they can be? Smaller than one human phalanx.
Platypedia

Okanagana and Platypedia are visually similar.
With few exceptions, both cicadas are primarily black with orange or beige highlights, both can be “hairy”, and both are common west of the Mississippi.

Platypedia tend to be smaller than Okanagana, many have a line down their pronotum, and they make sound by clapping their wings against their bodies. Okanagana make sound by vibrating their tymbals.

Thanks to cicada researcher Jeff Cole, Ph.D., for this tip: “From the side with the wings folded Platypedia have the node on the forewing way out towards the apex, while Okanagana and Tibicinoides will have the node located more or less in the middle of the wing.”

January 15, 2024

A Platypleura kaempferi

Filed under: Asia (Continent) | Platypleura | Platypleurini | Richard Newfrock — Dan @ 12:58 pm

This cicada is a Platypleura kaempferi. The photo comes from us from Richard Newfrock. Platypleura kaempferi is a member of the tribe Platypleurini. P. kaempfer is found in China, South Korea, Japan and other locations — even Poland (but that cicada was likely transported along with produce or in the root ball of a plant). Platypleura means flat/broad sides, and kaempferi likely refers to Emil Kaempfer or Kaempfer’s woodpecker, whose wing resembles the wing of the cicada.

There are three species of Platypleura kaempferi1 (I don’t know what distinguishes them. I don’t see the separate subspecies on iNaturalist either):

  1. P. kaempferi brevipennis Naruse, 1983, which seems to be found in Japan.
  2. P. kaempferi ridleyana Distant, 1905, which seems to be found exclusively in the Malay peninsula.
  3. P. kaempferi kaempferi (Fabricius, 1794), which is found throughout Asia.

Platypleura

Platypleura

Here’s the iNaturalist collection of Platypleura kaempferi photos.

Here’s a comparison of the wing of Kaempfer’s Woodpecker with out possible Platypleura kaempferi:

Wing comparison

Although the woodpecker and cicada resemble each other, Yasumasa Saisho let us know that Platypleura kaempferi was described by the German biologist Engelbert Kämpfer, and its scientific name is derived from it.

Richard Newfrock took the photo of the cicada, and Joao Quental took the photo of Kaempfer’s Woodpecker (Celeus obrieni, Caxias, Maranhão, Brasil) which is under a CC BY 2.0 license.

1 Catalogue of the Cicadoidea (Hemiptera: Auchenorrhyncha). DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-416647-9.00001-2 © 2014 Elsevier Inc.

A Yanga pulverea from Moramanga, Madagascar

Filed under: Africa (Continent) | Madagascar | Platypleurini | Richard Newfrock | Yanga — Dan @ 12:28 pm

This is a Yanga pulverea from Moramonga, Madagascar from the collection of Richard Newfrock.

This is a Yanga pulverea from Moramonga, Mogagascar from the collection of Richard Newfrock.

Yanga pulverea belongs to the cicada tribe Platypleurini, which are known for their prominent pronotal collars and infuscations on their wings. Platy means broad & flat, and pleur means side. Broad side, flat side. I don’t know the root of the word Yanga, but pulverea means power or dust. Here’s photos of living Y. pulvera on iNaturalist.

January 6, 2024

Cacama collinaplaga Sanborn and Heath in Sanborn, Heath, Phillips and Heath, 2011 aka Cactus Dodger

Filed under: Allen F. Sanborn | Cacama | Maxine E. Heath | United States — Tags: — Dan @ 9:49 pm

Scientific classification:
Family: Cicadidae
Subfamily: Cicadinae
Tribe: Cryptotympanini
SubTribe: Cryptotympanina
Genus: Cacama
Species: Cacama collinaplaga Sanborn and Heath in Sanborn, Heath, Phillips and Heath, 2011

List of sources

  1. Full Binomial Names: ITIS.gov
  2. Common names: BugGuide.net; The Songs of Insects by Lang Elliott and Wil Herschberger; personal memory.
  3. Locations: Biogeography of the Cicadas (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) of North America, North of Mexico by Allen F. Sanborn and Polly K. Phillips.
  4. Descriptions, Colors: personal observations from specimens or photos from many sources. Descriptions are not perfect, but may be helpful.

Cacama variegata Davis, 1919 aka Variegated Cactus Dodger

Filed under: Cacama | Tacuini (Cryptotympanini) | United States | William T. Davis — Tags: — Dan @ 9:46 pm

Scientific classification:
Family: Cicadidae
Subfamily: Cicadinae
Tribe: Cryptotympanini
SubTribe: Cryptotympanina
Genus: Cacama
Species: Cacama variegata Davis, 1919

List of sources

  1. Full Binomial Names: ITIS.gov
  2. Common names: BugGuide.net; The Songs of Insects by Lang Elliott and Wil Herschberger; personal memory.
  3. Locations: Biogeography of the Cicadas (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) of North America, North of Mexico by Allen F. Sanborn and Polly K. Phillips.
  4. Descriptions, Colors: personal observations from specimens or photos from many sources. Descriptions are not perfect, but may be helpful.

Diceroprocta bibbyi Davis, 1928 aka Scrub Cicada

Filed under: Diceroprocta | Tacuini (Cryptotympanini) | United States | William T. Davis — Tags: — Dan @ 9:44 pm

Classification:

Family: Cicadidae
Subfamily: Cicadinae
Tribe: Cryptotympanini
Subtribe: Cryptotympanina
Genus: Diceroprocta
Species: Diceroprocta bibbyi Davis, 1928

List of sources

  1. Full Binomial Names: ITIS.gov
  2. Common names: BugGuide.net; The Songs of Insects by Lang Elliott and Wil Herschberger; personal memory.
  3. Locations: Biogeography of the Cicadas (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) of North America, North of Mexico by Allen F. Sanborn and Polly K. Phillips.
  4. Descriptions, Colors: personal observations from specimens or photos from many sources. Descriptions are not perfect, but may be helpful.

Diceroprocta canescens Davis, 1935 aka Scrub Cicada

Filed under: Diceroprocta | Tacuini (Cryptotympanini) | United States | William T. Davis — Tags: — Dan @ 9:42 pm

Classification:

Family: Cicadidae
Subfamily: Cicadinae
Tribe: Cryptotympanini
Subtribe: Cryptotympanina
Genus: Diceroprocta
Species: Diceroprocta canescens Davis, 1935

List of sources

  1. Full Binomial Names: ITIS.gov
  2. Common names: BugGuide.net; The Songs of Insects by Lang Elliott and Wil Herschberger; personal memory.
  3. Locations: Biogeography of the Cicadas (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) of North America, North of Mexico by Allen F. Sanborn and Polly K. Phillips.
  4. Descriptions, Colors: personal observations from specimens or photos from many sources. Descriptions are not perfect, but may be helpful.

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