I try to get outside early in the morning to water the tomatoes, shrubs, flowers, etc. This morning I thought it sure was loud outside. Then I spotted this:
Looked up in the tree and saw another:
I decided this must be the year of the locust. So I came inside and googled year of the locust.....first line of the article was, Do not call Cicada locust. They are not locust!
I wonder if it would be acceptable to call them Katydid? That's what we always called them/ha
I remember being a Brownie Scout and our meeting place was a little building in the middle of many pine trees. The year the katydids came we all had a race to see who could collect the most from the trees. We had so much fun. The pine trees were covered with them.
The nymphs of the periodical cicadas live underground, often at depths of 30 cm (1 ft) or more, feeding on the juices of plant roots. They stay immobile and go through five development stages before constructing an exit tunnel in the spring of their 13th or 17th year. These exit tunnels have a diameter of about 1–1.5 cm (0.4–0.6 in).
The nymphs emerge on a Spring evening when the soil temperature at about 20 cm (8 in) depth is above 17 °C (63 °F). In most years, this works out to late April or early May in far southern states, and late May to early June in the far northern states. Emerging nymphs climb to a suitable place on the nearby vegetation to complete their transformation into an adult cicada. They molt one last time and then spend about six days in the leaves waiting for their exoskeleton to harden completely. Just after this final molt, the teneral adults are white, but darken within an hour.
Adult periodical cicadas live only for a few weeks—by mid-July, all have disappeared. Their short adult life has one purpose: reproduction. The males "sing" a species-specific mating song; like other cicadas, they produce loud sounds using their tymbals. Singing males of a single Magicicada species form aggregations (choruses) that are sexually attractive to females. Males in these choruses alternate bouts of singing with short flights from tree to tree in search of receptive females. Most matings occur in "chorus" trees.
Receptive females respond to the calls of conspecific males with timed wing-flicks, which attract the males for mating. The sounds of a "chorus"—a group of males—can be deafening and reach 100 dB. In addition to their "calling" or "congregating" song, males produce a distinctive courtship song when approaching an individual female.
After mating, the female cuts V-shaped slits in the bark of young twigs and lays approximately 20 eggs in each, for a total of 600 or more eggs. After about six to ten weeks, the eggs hatch and the newborn nymphs drop to the ground, where they burrow and begin another 13 or 17-year cycle.
Pretty amazing I think.
The ones I am hearing belong to Brood XIX, The Great Southern Brood: AL, AR, GA, IN, IL, KY, TN, LA, MO, MS, NC, OK, SC, TN, VA.
If you hear them (and believe me you will, if they are in your area) take the kids out and teach them about the Cicada....it will be 13 years before they reappear!