I would like to share this amazing life story of Cicada
, an insect, found in many parts of the world about which I came to know from my elder brother Dr. Shaugat stays at Tennessee.
About 2,500 species of cicada have been described. In USA different regions have this insect. Their life span is mind blowing and amazing. These insects are born from the eggs, right after they are born they dig holes and make their way to the ground and burrow in for a dark 17-year juvenile period until the hormones kick in that will turn them into adults. This year somewhere between 500 billion to 1 trillion Cicadas is coming out from in different regions of USA. When the earth temperature is exactly 64 degree Fahrenheit (EXACTLY, not even one degree less or more), they crawl out from ground, shed their crunchy brown exoskeletons. Then the winged insects make their short-lived act above the surface known. Males make species-specific mating calls by vibrating a white, drum like plate, or tymbal, on either side of their abdomens. These chirping and clicking noises by females can be heard up to a mile away. Standing near an especially loud chorus of cicadas can be like standing near a motorcycle, with a racket reaching up to 100 decibels. Another example can be, when all the males are singing they are so loud that you will not hear an airplane even it flies just above your head. They spend their few weeks of adulthood mating and laying eggs in tree branches. Then the red-eyed insects will all die, leaving their 2-inch-long bodies to litter the ground. The newly hatched Brood II babies, meanwhile, will make their way back to the ground and another cycle of new generation starts. Those bugs will go on hiatus until 2030 and then continue the cycle. The cicadas coming out of the ground now were born in 1996.
Last year north-east Tennessee (where we live) had Cicada chorus. They also came out after 17 years and then a new generation is under the ground for next 17 years.
Few days back my elder brother was driving by the mountain on his way to hospital, he heard that big loud cicada chorus. He was panicked thinking that his car was making noise. He stopped and then got out of the car. Then he I found that the tremendous noise was coming out from all the trees of mountains. It was an amazing experience! The chirping noise is all around, coming from all directions! he did not know what that was. Then one of his colleagues told him that that was Cicada songs!
Here are two pictures of one kind of Cicada