When Roy Troutman visited New Jersey and New York in 2013 for Brood II he took a lot of great cicada photos.
June 8, 2013
Enjoy these Brood II Magicicada photos from Scotch Plans, NJ from Judy Lanfredi.
Click each thumbnail image for larger versions.
Enjoy these videos of the Brood II Magicicada emergence from 2013.
Magicicada septendecim ovipositing
Periodical Cicadas in Merrill Park in Colonia NJ
Either a Magicicada cassini or septendecula
A calling Magicicada septendecim
June 6, 2013
Last Thursday Roy Troutman, Elias Bonaros and I traveled around central New Jersey, looking for cicadas. They were not hard to find. Elias found a location in Colonia that had a particularly loud Magicicada cassini chorusing center. Using my camera and Extech 407730 40-to-130-Decibel Digital Sound Level Meter, I recorded the calls of these cicadas and how loud they can get. The quality of the video isn’t the best because it’s a camera, not a video camera, but it is good enough.
Magicicada cassini chorusing center peaking at 85db (on Vimeo):
Elias and Roy used finger snaps, mimicking the wing snaps of female cicadas, to trick the males into singing:
Magicicada cassini responding to fingersnaps (on Vimeo):
We placed the M. cassini directly on the microphone and got calls as high as 109 decibels, in this video:
There were a few M. septendecim in the area as well. A Magicicada septendecim goes from a Court II to Court III call as soon as it crawls on the decibel meter, in this video.
The cicada choruses in Central New Jersey have no doubt gotten louder since last week. Hopefully, on Sunday I’ll get back out to Central Jersey or Staten Island and make some recordings.
May 19, 2013
When photographing adult Magicicadas, particularly if you are interested in identifying their species and gender, it is important to photograph them from multiple angles: ventral (bottom) and lateral (left or right) particularly near the head. Please take photos of the dorsal (top), anterior (front), posterior (hind) and other angles, however ventral and left or right are the best sides to help identify the species.
We also encourage you to clean your fingernails and include an item which can be used to determine the size of the insect, like a ruler.
The ventral view allows us to determine the species and sex.
The following photo features a male (left) and female (right) Magicicada septendecim (Linnaeus, 1758). Note the orange striped abdomen, characteristic of the M. septendecim. Also, as with other cicada species, note that the female’s abdomen comes to a point, and the male’s abdomen is thicker and ends with a “blocky-shaped” structure.
The following photo features a female (left) and male (right) Magicicada cassini (Fisher, 1851). Note the lack of distinct orange stripes on the abdomen, characteristic of the M. cassini. Their abdomens are nearly completely black. Also note that the female’s abdomen comes to a point, and the male’s abdomen is thicker and ends with a “blocky-shaped” structure.
Both these images were taken by the same photographer (Osamu Hikino) and we can use the size of his fingertips (nice clean nails) to compare the size of these two species. The M. cassini is relatively much smaller than the M. septendecim, which is why M. cassini is also known as the “dwarf cicada”.
I don’t have a good photo of the third species, the Magicicada septendecula Alexander and Moore, 1962 [view a photo of M. septendecula on another website]. The M. septendecula is similar to the M. cassini in size (hence smaller than the M. septendecula), but it has orange stripes like the M. septendecim, which is why it is important to get a photo of the left or right side of the insect so we can see the color of the pronotal extension.
The pronotal extension is an extension of the pronotum that lies between the Magicicada’s eye and its wing (outlined in green in the photo below). M. septendecim have orange coloring in that area, which gives us a key way to visually distinguish them from M. septendecula.
If you want to learn more about diagnosing the species and gender of cicadas (all species, not just Magicicada sp.) using photographs, track down the document Overview of Cicada Morphology by Allen F. Sanborn of Barry University.
I don’t want to discourage you from taking amazing photos of cicadas in every position and angle possible using all your fancy macro lenses and whatnot. All cicada photos are awesome, but only a few angles help us identify the insect.
May 18, 2013
These photos of adult Magicicada cicadas were taken in Westfield, NJ by Jim Occi on May 16th.
This photo is particularly interesting as the cicadas’s wings were damaged during the ecdysis (molting) process and its tymbal (the ribbed structure that makes the cicada’s sound) is clearly exposed:
Nature photographer Candice Trimble of Front Royal, Va, sent us these Brood II Magicicada photos.
An adult Magicicada septendecim (Linnaeus 1758):
Magicicada exuvia (shell):
Magicicada adult (probably an M. septendecim):
May 26, 2009
On Monday (Memorial Day) I was lucky enough to find a lone Magicicada septendecim brood II straggler in Metuchen, NJ. This is a male, and he was about 1.5 inches or 3.8 centimeters long.
Look for orange coloring between the wing and eye to identify Magicicada septendecim:
Cicadas have 3 tiny eyes called ocelli:
Thanks to Elias for noticing the coloration behind the eye that IDs this as a decim.
May 4, 2009
Tommy Joseph took these photos of Magicicada septendecim emerging Greensboro, North Carolina.
Update: looking at the maps, they probably aren’t brood XIV. Looks like they are Brood II accelerated 4 years, or Brood XIX accelerated 2 years (which would make them 13 year cicadas).
Big pile of skins:
Magicicada with damaged wings:
Male Magicicada septendecim:
Exuvia/skins/shells on leaves:
July 13, 2008
Check out these 17 year cicada photos from Frank Merenda of Asheville NC.