Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Cicada's!! A few random facts you might not have known....

This is a bit of a random post and if you don't live in a area where there are cicada you'll probably wonder what on earth I'm on about!!
A green cicada shedding its shell.  Image credit
I am sitting at my desk trying to get some work done while Miss L is asleep, and I can hardly hear myself think!!!!  The noise of the cicadas outside is literally deafening and really distracting when you're trying to concentrate.  I think it's a bit creepy that you can hear them everywhere you go but you never see them (except for their outer shells that are laying around everywhere).  Which is a actually blessing, because I think if I ever did see them flying around I can't promise I wouldn't freak out!!

Master J told me the other day that those little drips of water (like very light rain) you feel when standing under a tree is cicada wee.  "Oh really!!" I said, humouring him.  "IT IS MUM!!!" he insisted.  I decided to google it and guess what - he was right!!!!  EWWWW I am so not standing under any big trees any more.

While discovering that cicada's do in fact 'wee' on us, I also learnt a few other random facts about these strange bugs which I thought I would share......
  1. Once their eggs are laid they live under the ground for 7 years before they dig themselves to the surface to breed.
  2. They only come to the surface when the ground temperature is above 18 degrees C, so with our unseasonably warm weather this season they are out early.
  3. They are actually large tree crickets (not locusts)
  4. They drink the sap from trees and then 'wee' it out!!! True fact!!
  5. This year in Sydney there is a huge population of up to 1.5 million per acre.  WOWZERS!!
  6. They are the loudest insects know to man and a large swarm of them can reach up to 120 decibels - which is louder than a rock concert or a chain saw!!  No wonder I can't hear myself think!!
  7. Only the males sing because they are trying to 'woo' the females for a bit of loving!  Once they've mated they only last another month before dying.
  8. There are several different species and they all have their own unique song and colours. Some of have nicknames like the Green Grocer, Chocolate Soldier, Blue Moon and Yellow Monday.
  9. They shed their shells (usually at night) and often kids, like my Master J, like to collect the shells and bring them in to show you.  How lovely (not)!!!
  10. They are known to be 'the sound of summer'.  They louder they are and the earlier they start, the hotter the summer will be.
So there you have it, a very random but true bunch of facts about these strange little bugs that are driving me crazy at the moment.

Do you have any cicada stories??  Are they deafening you too???

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  1. I actually love cicadas, they really are the sound of summer for me, and I used to LOVE finding their shells as a kid - quite special also that they live for 7 years underground!

    1. They're very intriguing Em but coming from England where the scariest bug we have is the lady bug I'm a bit of a wuss I'm afraid!!!

  2. Once, as kids, we drank cicada wee for a whole afternoon! We were working on a fence line and had run low on water. The skies were overcast, so when liquid fell from above we figured it was drizzling. It was drizzling, but not water. Ugh!


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