All photographs copyright (2003-2013) by Kris H. Light

This wild-looking, red-eyed <strong>Periodical Cicada</strong> (<em>Magicicada septendecim</em> ) is just one of <u>trillions</u> in the eastern United States that emerged from the ground in May 2004. It is a Brood X (as in "10" in Roman Numerals) Peri...
This wild-looking, red-eyed Periodical Cicada (Magicicada septendecim ) is just one of trillions in the eastern United States that emerged from the ground in May 2004. It is a Brood X (as in "10" in Roman Numerals) Periodical Cicada, a.k.a. "17-Year Locust." They are un-nerving to "insectophobes," but these insects are harmless, they don't bite or sting.

The males "sing" (a sound that has been likened to the whirring sound of a UFO landing in a Sci-Fi movie) to attract their prospective mate by vibrating two membranes on the thorax just below the first pair of legs. After mating, the female lays her eggs in slits in the bark at the ends of tree twigs. Sometimes the leaves on those twigs will wilt and die. Other than that, the insects don't harm the tree. When the nymphs hatch from the eggs, they fall to the ground below the tree and dig in the soil until they find a tree root to drink sap from. (to be continued on the next picture)

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