Sunday, September 25, 2011

Cicada Exuvia




When I saw these in the garden at Haflong (my hometown) I thought to myself...Aha...I'll get some good  shots! Imagine my surprise when I went closer and realized they were empty shells! Looking up online I found out that they are cicada exuvia. The last one on the tree is from a friend's garden in the same neighbourhood.

According to Wiki, cicadas live underground as nymphs for most of their lives at depths of 1 ft down to 8.5 ft. The nymphs feed on root juice and have strong  front legs for digging. In the final nymphal instar, they construct an exit tunnel to the surface and emerge. They then shed their skin on a nearby plant for the last time and emerge as adults. The abandoned exoskeleton remains, still clinging to the bark of trees.
The above photo was taken two years ago in my backyard. You must have noticed the split at the back on my second photo. You might find it interesting to see how the cicada emerges as an adult here.

7 comments:

Sylvia K said...

One of the things I love about blogging is all the things that I learn -- things that I would probably never have learned without it! Fascinating post and great captures as always!

Sylvia

Ginny said...

The first two pictures are kind of pretty, the light gold. But the last is icky! That is the kind we have here. These pictures must be from two different kinds of cicadas.

One said...

That's really interesting. It's gold in color! I have some shots of exoskeleton of grasshopper and dragonflies.

Tina´s PicStory said...

It´s so cute, how this little ones are made. Great to see it in macro :)

lotusleaf said...

So this is the fellow who makes noise day and night in the forests of the Western Ghats! I had heard them, but not seen them.

eileeninmd said...

Cool macro shots, I've never seen the empty shell of the cicada. I lvoe your header shot, just beautiful. Cool looking dragonfly. I hope you are having a great Sunday!

Giga said...

Nie wiedziałam o tym. Dziękuję za wiedzę. Pozdrawiam