Quite amazing insects, these Cicadas!
We often hear them singing away almost throughout the day in the rainforests, forest fringes, parks and where there are some greenery, but spotting them is a whole different story. Just because you can hear them, it doesn't make it any easier to find them! For an insect that makes such a loud, high-pitched, buzzing noise, they're actually pretty difficult to find in their natural habitats because they would usually be very well camouflaged. The few times we do see them and get a good look is usually because they got a bit lost in the urban environment. And that's when photo opportunities arise!
And then, there have also been times when these photo opportunities were there but I did not have a camera on hand. Rats!
The National Geographic (http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/bugs/cicada/) has the following description for this insect: Cicadas are members of the order Homoptera and are physically distinguished by their stout bodies, broad heads, clear-membrane wings, and large compound eyes.
Anyway, in the last few years, I have managed to get only three good photos of cicadas; two of which were in an urban setting. Three photos for three different species. It is easy to see how these cicadas could easily hide away on trees and plants to avoid predation.
This jade green Cicada is quite large, its total length is around 8-9 cm. (I'm guessing Dundubia vaginata.) Found it in the stairwell in a building in the concrete jungle. Am certainly glad I had decided to walk several floors down the stairs rather than take the elevator.
This brownish-gray Cicada is quite well camouflaged against the tree bark. Spotted it because I saw an object fly across overhead and landed smack on the tree. Even then, it took me a while to find it and even longer to get the camera focused! I am guessing its total length to be between 6-8 cm.
This black Cicada was found on the ground on its back and was struggling to get itself upright. So I gave it my index finger to cling on to help it up and took the chance to snap photos of it. It eventually flew away after a short rest. Its total length is approximately 7 cm.
And here are the cicada exoskeletons that have been left behind after the cicada nymphs emerge from the ground for their transformation to begin their adult life.
So..... the male cicadas would now be ready to start singing and wait for the female cicadas to follow his song and find him!
Better sing it sweet!
Better sing it sweet!