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Tibicen canicularis in Newton, Ma.

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Tibicen canicularis in Newton, Ma.

Tibicen canicularis nymph

Got a few emails from a person from Newton stating that he is experiencing heavy emergences of Cicadas in his neighborhood in Newton. So naturally I headed to Newton, Mass. to investigate.

One of the places I stopped was Charles River Reservation. First off let me say that the Reservation area smelled really bad. I don't know if it was due to the rains yesterday or what but the soil was soft and smelled like decaying vegitation which gives off a sulferous methane smell. It was not pleasant.

Tibicen canicularis exuvumHowever, this first stop did yield a male Tibicen canicularis which looked like it had a hard time molting. Its exuvium was black on one side. The blackness is due to an unsuccessful molt where a body part like a wing or a leg gets ripped when the cicada is attempting to emerge.

Tibicen canicularis male.When I picked up the specimen, and turned it over, it was missing one of its middle legs and also seemed to be very black where the opercula are. Opercula cover the male cicada's timbals that it uses to make sounds. You can see from the image on the right that this specimen, while still teneral is taking a while to gain its true colors. Look at how light the pronotal collar is. Also check out the two-tone eyes. Partly brown, partly grey. This is no doubt due to the loss of hemolymph.

Kicked Off Campus at Regis College

Ever hear the expression "Do As I Say, Not As I Do"? Well, I shoulda followed my own advice which is never go on private property to search for cicadas. It was the campus of Regis College but I didn't know it was private property. I was looking for other places in the Newton/Wellesley area and drove to the campus. It had nice landscaped grounds with plenty of old well-established trees.

So I was examining the trees (where I found heavy cicada activity in the form of many exuvia) when an older couple pulls up to me in their car and inquire as to what I was doing. The older gentleman in the car seemed to me to be a professor at the college so I immediately told him what I was doing ie; researching cicadas and that I have a web site where I publish my data etc. While he seemed to be generally interested in what I was doing, he intimated that I check with security since it was a "Private Campus". I told him I apologized and that I would check with security right away and asked where it was located. He pointed back to the direction he had just come from.

However, he beat me to security. As I was walking back to my car, I noticed that he turned around and headed back the way he had come. When I pulled up to where he was parked, I could see him already talking to a security guard. When I got out of my car, the security guard was quite rude (and foreign I might add, so take that the way you want to) and really didn't want to hear anything.

Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect 200 Dollars

Basically, the security guard "penalized" me for not checking in with security first. He told me that it was private property and since I didn't check with them that I had to leave. I again apologized and I left.

Naturally when I got back to my car and drove away, I started fuming about what just happened:

  1. I couldn't believe that I got kicked off of a college campus. A place of higher learning no less! I would've figured this place of all places would've at least appreciated that I was doing research and striving to learn something but apparently that didn't matter.
  2. I wonder what the professor-type actually told the Security guard. Even though he seemed interested it was probably all a ploy. If he told the security guard to let me stay I'm sure it wouldn't have been a problem.
  3. I thought the foreign security guard was quite rude and I didn't like the way I was treated. I could say a lot of other things about him but it just wouldn't be politically correct but this guy really pissed me off. Something similar to this happened to me years ago when I flew back from England to Boston arriving via Terminal E, the international terminal. But that would be a whole other story.

Call it what you want, the security guard after all was just doing his job right? I think you wouldn't think so, if you were in my shoes.

Date Posted: 2005-08-21 Comments: (0) Show CommentsHide Comments


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