Friday, May 25, 2012
Have you seen one of these?
If you haven't seen one, you have probably heard them. The cicada is often refereed to as the 17 year locust because some of the cicada species appear once every 17 years.
These are large bugs and look a lot like a large horsefly, although they are not related to flies. Most are nearly 2 inches long and have bright red eyes.
The Major has heard their call at least three times in his lifetime. The cicadas in Florida sound a lot different than the ones in Ohio he remembers from his youth.
Some of the Rightardia staff are annoyed by this insect because it is so loud. Some cicadas been measured at 100 decibels at 20 yards away.
That is loud enough to be heard over a lawnmower and pronged exposure to that noise could cause hearing damage.
Most Americans, who live to be about 78, will be fortunate to hear the cicada four times in their lifetime. However, there are also some 13 year cicadas.
Although cicadas have a long life cycle the bug phase usually lasts about a week. Once they mate and lay eggs, the giant noisy bugs die.
The major like cicadas because it reminds him of his own mortality. He knows he has been around another one of their 17 year cycle and hopes he may hear them sing one more time in 2019.
He will have led a long life if he is so fortunate.
To learn more about this interesting insect, see http://www.gpnc.org/cicadas.htm
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