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


Two Tibicens Taken from Cicada Killers

News Category: Cicada General Info

Two Tibicens Taken from Cicada Killers

Female Cicada Killer

Hey All, here's another update for you. A lot has happened over the last several days since my last update. I decided to break these down as they happened. So, Let the fun begin. The reader submissions have just about doubled so more of those will be put on the Cicada and Cicada Killer Sightings page.

Two Tibicen lyricens Taken from Cicada Killers - August 2nd 2006

Like last year, I have been periodically visiting the Pine Grove Cemetery in Westford, Ma to check on the status of the Cicada Killer colony there. I counted over 40 Cicada Killer burrows. Every few days more and more burrows seem to pop up by newly emerging females. The time should be coming to an end for them unfortunately as there are only a few more weeks left of good weather for cicadas.

I was able to steal paralyzed cicadas away from two females and I even captured two of the wasps to send to my friend in New Zealand who studies cicadas there.

A Simple Technique

Cicada Killer at blocked entrance.I use a rather simple technique to steal cicadas away from cicada killers. First I insert a stick into a burrow entrance and wait for a female cicada killer to come back with a cicada. If it comes back without a cicada and just wants to check on its burrow, I remove the stick. It will do a little maintenance cleaning then fly off again. Then I just put the stick back in the entrance again.

Cicada Killer at blocked entrance.If a female does catch a cicada, when it tries to enter its burrow, I swat the cicada away from from the wasp. This proves how non-aggressive these wasps really are as the female cicada killer just flies off to hunt for another cicada. I then remove the stick from the burrow entrance. Piece of cake.

Below are the images of two paralyzed Tibicen lyricen male cicadas. These guys - while they cannot move - are very much alive. In fact when I took these home, I pinned them and put them on a spreading board with their wings fully spread. I waited a day or two. When I released them from the spreading board, the wings snapped back into place. The venom of the cicada killer female apparently keeps the cicadas alive and fresh for a very long time.

Date Posted: 2006-08-02 Comments: (0) Show CommentsHide Comments


Sorry no comments have been posted to this article. Be the first by filling out the form below.

Add Comment

Cicada General Info Articles

General News Articles 2013

General News Articles 2012

General News Articles 2011

General News Articles 2010

General News Articles 2009

General News Articles 2008

General News Articles 2007

General News Articles 2006

General News Articles 2005

General News Articles 2004

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.