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Old 05-03-2011, 07:10 PM   #1
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Default A weekend with the cicadas

Cicadas.

Yeah. Those june bug like creatures that hide in the ground for 17 years while they pupate (or whatever else there is to do down there) then they take to the trees for 23 days and spend the entire time trying to mate.

The rangers said we had arrived on day 5. Only 17 to go.

The sound they make is unbelievable. When in the woods it comes from 360 degrees on all three axis. X, Y and Z. Or pitch, roll and yaw if you prefer. And it never lets up, all day long. It seems you pull into the campground and you are in a Steven King novel, wondering if in the morning whatever is making that noise in the woods is going to eat you, or turn you into something, errr, less than human, and you'll be eating your neighbor. Assuming they are still human.

The sound is like there are 10,000 old fashioned Coleman lanterns in the woods. Fortunately, the cicada is kin to the june bug, or july fly, who make their racket in the heat of the day. Not the cricket who sings into the night. When the sun goes down they're off to bed, after a hard day of frantic mating.

We found one who had done it until he'd done himself in. This is the large red-eyed version with the 17 year cycle. There are other kinds, with various multi-year plans. Ours were the 17 year type.

In my 54 years I had never experienced such a thing, and it was an interesting experience.

Weird, actually, is what it was.
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Old 05-03-2011, 07:21 PM   #2
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Some dogs gobble those things up off the ground, must be real tasty?

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Old 05-03-2011, 08:25 PM   #3
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Their in the Macon area also, make one heck of a rackett !
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Old 05-04-2011, 08:08 PM   #4
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Noisy critters for sure. They haven't made out in force yet at my QTH, but by mid-July they'll be out in force.
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Old 05-06-2011, 04:46 PM   #5
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When I was a kid in Lubbock Tx, we used to tie dental floss around them with about a 6' lead, sort of like a leash, and they would fly in circles around us till we were dizzy.
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