Dedicated to the Study of the Cicadas of Massachusetts and New England


Latest Cicada News

The Hunt for Okanagana with Elias

Tibicen canicularis female Back in 2007 when I discovered Okanagana in Massachusetts I was excited and had to tell my good friend Elias - who's from New York - all about the area and habitat. Elias and I met through email correspondence when he discovered Massachusetts Cicadas during the Brood XIII Periodical cicada emergence back in June of 2007. Since then, whenever cicada season rolls around we are in constant contact with each other discussing cicadas and bouncing ideas off of each other as to where to look for specie

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Date Posted: 2010-06-14 Comments: (0) Category: Cicada Projects

A Possible New Location for Okanagana rimosa?

Little wood satyr butterfly Given my recent successes with finding Okanagana rimosa in New Hampshire and Massachusetts and developing a familiararity with habitat types for the species, I have decided that I would try to locate other similar habitats. It would seem that O. rimosa in New England prefers a sandy soil environment consisting of pitch pine, scrub oak and other deciduous-type trees with abundant blueberry plants. While O. rimosa has been reported in Bedford and Concord, Ma.; (from old literature) as well a

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Date Posted: 2010-06-11 Comments: (0) Category: Cicada Projects

Another Look at Ossipee Pine Barrens

White Tailed Skimmer With the dismal showing of Okanagana rimosa at the Concord Pine Barrens in Concord, N.H. today, and despite the cloudy and overcast day, I decided to drive the extra hour north to see if I could find more evidence of Okanagana rimosa at the Ossipee Pine Barrens. I was hopeful that I could perhaps find some low-lying specimens waiting out the cool and overcast day or perhaps even a nymph in the middle of the eclose process. I previously visited the Ossipee Pine Barrens on May 30th, of this y

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Date Posted: 2010-06-11 Comments: (0) Category: Cicada Projects

Cicada Sexual Development

Cicada sexual development Once a 5th Instar nymph molts into a full adult Cicada, they are not yet ready to reproduce. It would seem that several criteria, which I have noted have to take place first. Post-Teneral Stage - Cicadas have to develop into a fully hardened adult from the teneral stage which is the point directly after the molt process. This process takes several hours (see the section on Cicada Molt Process for more information). Waxy Buildup (Pruinosity development) - Once they

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Date Posted: 2010-06-03 Comments: (1) Category: Cicadas 101

How Adult Cicadas Feed

Adult cicadas feeding Back in the 1970's when I discovered my first cicada and started reading up on them, books of that era made note of the fact that Cicadas did not feed when they were adults. Their sole primary function when living above ground was to perpetuate the species by reproduction as their life span as adults was 7 to 10 days maximum. This of course was later proved to be false. In fact, Cicadas do indeed feed above ground. Cicadas have a unique mouth part for feeding known as a beak. It is a stylus

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Date Posted: 2010-06-03 Comments: (4) Category: Cicadas 101

Adult Cicada Defenses

Adult cicada defenses As an adult, Cicadas can rely on several defense mechanisms in order to aid in their survival. Predator Foolhardiness - Unlike Periodical Cicadas which rely on predator foolhardiness to survive, Tibicen Cicadas are the exact opposite. The slightest sense of danger from a predator will send them flying off in a flash. If you happen upon a male, in some instances a brief alarm squawk may be heard just prior to it taking flight. What is believed to help Tibicen Cicadas in detecting pr

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Date Posted: 2010-06-03 Comments: (7) Category: Cicadas 101

Cicada Emergence

Tibicen canicularis nymph Tibicen Cicadas take anywhere from two to nine years to go from a 1st instar nymph to the 5th and final instar stage. All this happens below-ground and in total darkness, can you believe it? Cicadas emerge from the ground in their final stage of development known as the 5th instar stage. After fighting it's way through the soil, the Cicada's primary concern is to find a safe place to carry out it's final molt into adulthood. This is usually done by climbing the nearest tree which ends up bei

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Date Posted: 2010-06-02 Comments: (1) Category: Cicadas 101

Cicada Nymph Mortality

Cicada nymph mortality Despite the difficulties that a cicada nymph may experience during it's juvenile developement below ground, there are still some predatory issues that a nymph faces just looking for a place to molt. The thumbnail to the right demonstrates this. As you can see, the Tibicen canicularis pictured was set upon by a colony of black ants. This was due to the Cicada being stressed during it's the process of molting and was unsuccessful in it's completion. The ants, in nature's glorious design, took the

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Date Posted: 2010-06-02 Comments: (1) Category: Cicadas 101

Nymph Defense Mechanisms

T. canicularis nymph playing dead Realistically one can say that a Cicada nymph has no defense mechanisms to speak of. However, I have noted some unusual behaviors in Cicada nymphs that can be characterized as weak defenses at best. Some of these defenses even carry over into adulthood. Read below: Wing Bud Flick - When handling a Cicada nymph, many times I have noticed that a nymph will flick it's wing buds when handled. This is really noticable particularly when you grasp the Cicada nymph with your thumb and index finger

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Date Posted: 2010-06-02 Comments: (0) Category: Cicadas 101

Random Cicada Video

Submit Report

Did you spot an annual cicada or a cicada killer wasp? If you did and you have a photo and want to report it, please click the link below.

Brood I Information

The Brood I periodical cicada emergence happened in 2012 in Virginia, W. Virginia and Tennessee. Below are some of the highlights.

Brood XIX Information

The Brood XIX periodical cicada emergence has come and gone. Below is some information that you may find helpful.