Thursday, June 14, 2007

Cicada invasion

This is the time in the 17 year cicada cycle that the bugs crawl out of the ground. I remember the cicadas in Austin TX fondly, hearing the buzz circling through the trees above. Rarely did I see one of these buzzing creatures. In the city we have barely heard a cicada. I drove out to the suburbs yesterday for the PAQA meeting and was amazed by the sound as soon as I got out of my car. There was that buzzing sound but then there was this other more all encompassing continuous hum that sounded other worldly. Like the sound of an alien invasion in a sci-fi film of the 1950's.

After the meeting I walked through a parking lot with a few trees that were covered with cicadas. As I got close the sound was deafening. The cicadas flew every which way and within seconds I had 5 cicadas on me. I shooed them off before getting in the car and then found another on my shoulder. As I drove away I heard buzzing in the back seat and saw a cicada laying upside down on the seat buzzing away. Then I found another in the door handle and 3 more landed on my leg. I had to stop twice on the way home to get the unlikely hitchikers out of the car. I can not imagine what it would be like living for 6-8 weeks with that continuous sound, I wonder if there is an increase in mental health issues every 17 years.


  1. I'm sure they are noisy and irritating, but aren't they beautiful???!!

  2. Oh I love them, I think they are some of the coolest creatures on the planet. i am just not sure if I would still love them after living with them under these conditions. it was unbelievable.

  3. Hi Argh! I would need to leave the town every 17 years!!! I'm a biologist at heart but can't do insects - especially not one's that big that hitchhike :) Helen

  4. Anonymous5:12 PM

    Hi Judy, I used to live in Japan and cicadas are there every summer without fail and during the summer months different cicadas appear and the sounds change, really interesting, if not deafening. Towards September, quieter ones appear and as if to match the cooler weather, they make a much lower sound.
    At first, I thought I'd go crazy too. The Japanese children go around with traps and catch them in little baskets.


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