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Cicadas


Worker 11811
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I saw a very interesting sight, today.

 

I was outside, doing some yard work when I came upon a cicada, mid-molt, on the side of a tree trunk. I ran inside and got my camera and fired off several shots.

 

I spent a good chunk of the day shooting pictures and watching it emerge from its old skin. I first saw it around 10:30 AM. By 3:00 PM it had flown away.

 

We don't have the 17-Year periodic cicadas here in this part of Pennsyltucky but this year seems to be a bumper crop for the annual "Dog Day" variety. There are dozens and dozens of them flying around, making buzzing noises in the trees.

 

>>> Picture: Dog Day Cicada in Molt. <<<

 

>>> Picture: Cicada After Emerging <<<

 

>>> Picture: Cicada Ready to Fly <<<

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The last summer I was in Cincinnati I nearly went insane over the Cicadas. They were deafening in the late afternoon.

 

Fortunately they were quiet at night.

 

We don't have them out here and I don't miss them at all.

 

 

 

OFF

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Their droning is maddening.

 

I was in Japan meeting a friend during the summer, and the sound never ended. It nearly drove me half out of my skull.

 

People say they taste good though. Go figure.

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bug eaters would make me puke if i had to see them eating too!

 

we have cicadas here and they are loud most times of the day. i do not like bugs, nor loud ones... but that first pic was great worker! very creepy and intriguing. well done!

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We call them locus here in texas.

last night I had 5 of them going nuts outside my window and the damn bugs kept me up have the night.

 

Great pics Worker.

Its not often you get to see the process of them breaking out of there shell.

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When they are in their 13 year cycle in Cincinnati there are a hundred thousand in a city block. The noise is deafening. You literally cannot hear each other talk.

 

They climb up out of the ground at the base of their tree and up in the foilage for their feast. They make lots of noise, fornicate,drop their eggs to the ground, die and it's all over for another 13 years.

 

 

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We call them locus here in texas.

 

You see, I always thought they were locusts, too, Eric. But I was told when moved to Pennsyltucky that "No . . . Those critters are cicadas!" Beats me - The cicadas look like locusts and sound like locusts - I wonder if what we say about ducks goes for locusts, too? I just know that a couple of years ago is when they made their once-every-thirteen-year-appearance here in the Pittsburgh area. It sure as hell wasn't a pretty site! Dangerous, too. When you run over them in your car, it's like driving on grease!

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What about when they crash into windows and go splat?

I can imagine how much of pain cleaning those suckers off a windshield would be.

Yuck!

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Annual (AKA: "Dog Day") cicadas don't hatch in large numbers like their 13 and 17 year cousins do. They hatch continuously throughout the season. There aren't enough of them to be come hazardous like they do in mass emergences.

 

Cicadas and locusts are two seperate and distinct bugs. A locust is a bug that looks like a grasshopper. When it emerges it eats everything in site, often stripping bare whole patches of land. Once emerged from their holes, cicadas don't even eat. They are like mayflies. They exist only to mate and lay eggs. After about two weeks they die off. Their offspring burrow underground and live by sucking the nutrients out of plant roots. They usually don't do much damage except on mass emergences when the females lay eggs under the bark of tree branches. This can cause the brances to die off. If too many leaves and branches get damaged the whole tree may be in jeopardy. Other than the annoyance factor and, as FrBrGr said, dangers during swarms cicadas are virtually harmless.

 

Cicadas are often called "locusts" because the colonists who settled the Americas had never seen anything like them before. They had read about plagues of locusts in the Bible. They just assumed that these bugs were the biblical locust, since they swarmed every 13 years. (Thirteen, being "The Devil's Number", only amplified the myth. )

 

It's noting like the mass plagues of the periodical locusts but things get mighty noisy around here during the day. There are several dozen of them buzzing at any given time. They quiet down at night. I think their buzzing behavior is temperature dependant. If I'm trying to sleep or have quiet time they can get annoying but I have a high noise threshold.

 

I live right near the runway of our local airport. If I can sleep when a C-130 takes off, just a few hundred yards outside my bedroom window, a few singing bugs aren't even going to be noticed!

 

A lot of people think they are gross but once you study them for a little while, cicadas are some pretty cool bugs.

 

I was working outside in the yard when I came up on the tree where the thing was molting. It startled me for a moment because I didn't know what it was. It was only half way out of its shell when I first found it. By the time I got my camera and came back it had almost completely emerged.

 

I'm glad you like the pictures! You don't often get to see a cicada molting like that, much less get to photograph it. I thought it would make a pretty cool story. I think it would be neat to see a mass emergence of periodical cicadas but the next brood isn't due to hatch until 2008 and it's not even in this part of the state. It'll be more in the southern and southeast parts. I don't know why there are none here. It'd like to see a swarm of them just once.

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I was driving along I-40 in Hickory, North Carolina one night when I drove through a swarm of about 1,000,000 fireflies!

 

Let me tell y'all a secret I learned that night: DO NOT turn on your windshield wipers!

 

I had to pull the car over to the side of the road![/i]

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Yeah - good one Fox.

 

Guess it's an old corny one. But we need even the corny ones occasionally to balance the news of wars, counter wars, famines, and earthquakes.

 

Guess a guy could get depressed in this world with out the Denne Pub to retire to occasionally for a pint and a laugh !!

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Worker,

let me guess ...that when you use the wipers it only smears and really makes a bigger mess from those creatures.

Do there insides become like a glue and oil based material?

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When a firefly gets squashed its innards glow!

 

When one hits your car windshield at 70 MPH, it leaves a foot-long glowing, green streak up the glass! If you fly through a swarm of them, there are 1,000 glowing, green streaks!

 

Whatever you do, DO NOT turn on the windshield wipers at this point! If you do, the glowing green streaks will be turned into a thin coating of glowing, green, gelatinous goo, mixed with windshield washer fluid! You will not be able to see out the window!

 

I had to pull over and wait a few minutes until the glow died down. Lukily, I had a bottle of Windex and some rags in the trunk. I was able to wash most of the bugs off by hand.

 

The whole thing was actually pretty funny. I wish I had taken a picture of it. Picture, if you will, a blue Dodge Neon sitting by the side of the highway, in the middle of the night with about 1,000 glowing green streaks of bug guts trailing up the front bumper, across the hood and up the windshield. It was really eerie looking!

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Ravens8,

 

The only reason I knew that joke was 'cause I used to tell a slightly different version of it when I was younger.

Edited by Guest
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Well a few hours ago while outside, I ran over one of those suckers in my wheelchair.

I spent the next 30 mins getting its yucky iinsides off my front wheel.

I HATE THOSE CREATURES!

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I think congratulations are called for Worker for finding a legit reason for using that emoticon!! I've been trying to find a way to slip it in - you beat me to it " title="Applause" />

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When I was a rotten little kid we used to steal bunches of those little single serving ketchup packets, put them on the ground and stomp on them to see how far we could make the ketchup squirt.

 

I figure, if you aim your chair just right, you ought to be able to make one of those little bastages squirt a couple of feet! Time it just right and, if there's somebody standing around that you don't particularly like, just make it squirt all over somebody's shoes!

 

Don't worry ravens8. There are still a bunch of other emoticons to figure out.

 

Unless you're talking about "Shaft" I don't ever see a use for this one!

(He's a bad mutha-HUSH yo' mouth!... Just talkin' 'bout Shaft!... <*SHAFT!*> )

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