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Tibicen exuvia from Rehoboth, MA

Sightings Category: Cicadas

Tibicen exuvia from Rehoboth, MA

While doing some yard work, retrieved a wheel barrel that was in the backyard over a pile of cut tree branches and was surprised to see four (4) large insect shells, never seen anything like it, with the exception of a shedded snake skin years ago, and was very curious to find out what type of insect this was, as two of them were very large, unfortuantely the heavy rain knocked two of them off the bottom of the wheelbarrel, as it didn't occur to me to take photos. Thank you for your informative site and request for pics

Date Posted: 2011-08-09 Comments: (4) Show Comments Hide Comments


Posted By: Massachusetts Cicadas | On: 2011-08-14 | Website:

Hi Steve

Thanks for the photos of cast-off nymphal shells from cicadas from the Genus Tibicen. Also, thanks for including the ruler so that we can tell scale. Normally, based on their size I'd say that these were from the species Tibicen canicularis or Tibicen lyricen two of our most common species here in New England. But what has me intriqued is the dark pigmentation just above the wing buds on your two specimens there. Typically, those dark areas we have found - and while not generally known - is that exuiva with those spots would mean that these could quite possibly be the cicadas known as Tibicen tibicen.

While I have records and have witnessed single-males calling here - and - there in eastern Massachusetts, I have yet to find established populations with many individuals. The only place where one can find established populations is on the island of Nantucket. I will have some colleagues look at these images and get their input as to species.

Thanks very much for sharing. I may have to make a trip to Rehoboth one of these days and just have a listen around town.

Posted By: Jimmy Wu | On: 2011-08-15 | Website:

Tibicen tibicen is quite a reclusive and sporadic species. But they never seem to congregate in large numbers. Usually you only hear the calls of single males especially here in Kansas, which is most likely not part of its normal range.

Posted By: Massachusetts Cicadas | On: 2011-08-15 | Website:

Hey Jimmy,

While T. tibicen may be reclusive in your area, in some areas they are thick with them. I have noted single calling males here-and-there on the mainland of Massachusetts but they are thick on Nantucket Island and also around the Hartford Connecticut area.

They are even pretty easy to catch as they like to call down low with easy reach of humans.

In fact, the first cicada I ever found as a boy was a T. tibicen while growing up in Baltimore, Maryland.

Posted By: Jimmy Wu | On: 2011-08-15 | Website:

Interesting, I do admit them being an interesting species as the songs are unique in a way. I however am having trouble catching one. Although I still hear males call, I often hear them call pretty high up in the trees. And just for reasons since you mentioned it, I actually grew up in China. The first cicada species I remember catching in Asia is one known as Tibicen japonicus. :)

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