More T. tibicen Survey Work
News Category: Cicada Missions
More T. tibicen Survey Work
Update 3/21/11: The species name formerly known as Tibicen chloromera has been changed to Tibicen tibicen. The article has been edited to reflect this change.
Today, I drove back to Connecticut from northern Massachusetts to pick up John Cooley and Mike Neckermann to continue our surveys of T. chloromera's Tibicen tibicen's northern most range.
Who is John Cooley?
John Cooley is an Associate Professor in Residence at the University of Connecticut at Storrs who has requested to tag along with us.
John lectures and does research at UCONN and the University of Michigan on Cicadidae. Particularly Okanagana rimosa and Okanagana canadensis cicadas. In addition he also studies the Magicicada species and he along with fellow colleague David Marshall have even discovered a fourth species of 13 year Magicicada known as M. neotredicm. It is very similar to M. tredecim except that it has a different calling song and other physical characteristics which makes it a true new species.
I have communicated many times with John through email and it sure was a thrill to meet him for the very first time today.
John wanted to see for himself just how extensive T. chloromera Tibicen tibicen is in Connecticut and besides, he's like Mike and I. He absolutely digs cicadas.
Off To North Coventry
We started out first in North Coventry due to a report that I received from David Marshall, a colleague of John's that also works at UCONN. He indicated that he heard several males calling a few days ago so this is the first place we investigated.
Sure enough there were at least two male T. chloromeras Tibicen tibicens calling. Unfortunately, I likened these to just "satellite" males similar to the one T. chloromeras Tibicen tibicens I heard calling in my own back yard here in northern Massachusetts several weeks back.
These males in North Coventry were many miles away from the main area populations which are across the Connecticut River on the western side and were probably searching for new grounds. Other than these two males in this area, these two were the only T. chloromeras Tibicen tibicens heard east of the Connecticut River and we only heard them call a few times.
So we headed west towards the Connecticut River and one of our stops was Wethersfield, CT where we heard the huge population in Hartford County and where we caught three specimens two weeks ago. Sure enough the T. chloromeras Tibicen tibicens were still there though it seemed that they weren't as abundant. You can really start to feel that the Cicada season is coming to an end.
We took some recordings and data and John actually showed us a special technique which I have never seen before in order to catch certain species of Tibicen cicadas. Suffice it to say that it did work but on a rather ratty male T. chloromera Tibicen tibicen. So I still think the jury is still out on this one.
We spent the rest of the day going over the data that I recorded from last week just to verify my findings of the towns and areas where I had heard T. chloromera Tibicen tibicen. Sure enough the T. chloromera Tibicen tibicen were still there. We even managed to add a few additional towns to our data which is very exciting.
The Next Step
The next and final step for T. chloromera's Tibicen tibicen's northern most edge is to determine exactly where the boundary is. While I believe it is in Windsor Locks, exactly where in Windsor locks does it stop? Trying to find the actual border will be difficult.