Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Hail Cicadas!

Of all things, this puts me of a missing-Oklahoma state of mind -- the churring of cicadas, or as they're commonly called in Ponca City and beyond, locusts:



Perhaps there are large, graceless, screaming insects on the eastern side of Oregon, but I've never heard one anywhere west of the Cascade range. Maybe they roar differently here?

The wikipedia page on these beasts has a lot of fascinating visuals, along with a list of the staggering variety of genera that is, alone, worth the price of browsing there.

3 comments:

Domestically Challenged said...

Oh-oh-oh, we DOOOO get them here, Dale, we DO!

We just get a quieter variety but every decade or so they come out in a strange reproductive mass and they are loud and everywhere!!!! I've lived in my house for 4 yrs now and it was in the first two years that this happened. I thought it was the weirdest thing ever! Then they had a story about it on the news and said that every ____ yrs (I think they said 15, but memory could be faulty) they have swarms and it has to do with some weird reproduction cycle.

I tried to find links but all I could come up with were these which discus the usual annual ones we have living here in our fair city....

http://apartmentbiology.blogspot.com/2008/07/oregon-cicadas.html

http://www.whatsthatbug.com/2009/06/20/cicada-and-shed-skin-from-oregon/

Domestically Challenged said...

Ok, I have done further research... They are periodical ones which come every 13-17 years and they do come to Portland. All links (I'm not including) are to various blogs with hundreds of Cicada siting posted through out the country, if one scrolls through long enough, they will find Portland ones. Anyway, our annual Cicada are here but much quieter than the crazy periodical variety. I do hear them every now and then each summer and have wondered what that humming sound was, now I know! And, after looking at pictures, I now realize that the Grasshopper Thing1 and I found last week was actually a Cicada and not the mutant Grasshopper I thought it was. I wondered what that Grasshopper was doing about hanging in my tree at night....

Anyway, thanks for posting this piece! I love learning new things!

Dale said...

DC, thanks for flagging all that down. Could you perty-please let me know the next time you hear them around here? I'll listen more closely. I'd love to enjoy them again, even if they're crappy smallish ones.