Cicadas sing roulades - we lose a crop


In summer you can hear long, often shrill sounds coming from trees and shrubs. This is a male cicada sing. Cicadas are the loudest representatives among insects. Their singing is more diverse than the chanting of grasshoppers and locust. And they reproduce sounds with a completely different instrument - eardrums.

Insects systematics

Which order of insects are cicadas? Scientists attributed them to the equiped proboscis (Homoptera). Equal wing - because all 4 wings of the same or almost the same density. Proboscis - as they have piercing-sucking proboscis. They feed on plant sap. This group also includes aphid, scale insects and worms.

Characteristics of cicadas

Despite the fact that cicadas are separated into a separate suborder, they have common insect signs. Thus, in the representatives of this taxon, the front wings are either transparent or leathery. Stack up roof. The body is thick, the wings protrude far beyond the tip of the abdomen. Antennae short, segmented. On the wide head there are 2 complex eyes and three simple ones.

The larvae are tender, with thin integuments, therefore they inhabit shelters. At first, they live under the bark of trees, then fall to the ground and dig deep enough. Sometimes a meter deep. Some representatives protect themselves from predators and desiccation by forming a scum around their body.

The length of cicadas is from 2 to 70 mm. Smaller members jump very well using their hind limbs. In large species, all limbs are walking.

Singing Cicadas

Allocated to a separate family. The family is also called "real cicada". Have a number of common features. The description of singing cicadas is the following: large insects with a thick belly, walking legs and well-developed transparent wings. The hips of the front legs are thickened, with two or three teeth. All representatives have a remarkable ability for loud singing. In the world of singing cicadas about 1500 species. These creatures live mainly in warm climatic zones.

Signs of insects are the same for all representatives of singing cicadas. Therefore, having remembered one cicada, it is easy to determine the belonging of other species to the same family.

Singing cicadas

Cicadas sing in a variety of ways. Description of the song individually for each type. The voice may sound like a circulating saw or a monotonous train. Some songs are distinguished by the presence of two parts, different in sound.

The timbral organs that reproduce sound are located on the ventral side of the body. Special plates cover the unit. Cymbals themselves consist of three membranes. The external membrane is connected with powerful muscles. The muscles change the bulge of the membrane to the concavity, and vice versa. The muscles attached to the center of the instrument tense, flexing the membrane. Sound is played. Further, the muscles relax, and the membrane takes the same position. At this stage, the sound may be reproduced, or may not be heard by the human ear. The result is a chattering, as when playing with a convex tin can lid. The remaining membranes (front and back) enter into resonance with the external or have their own muscles. The back membrane is called a "mirror". She beautifully shimmers in different colors.

Oscillations occur up to 4,000 times per second with sufficient heat. However, a hundred times a second is enough to chirp cicada. Large air cavities enhance the sound - they are resonators. Cavities are connected to spiracles for air supply. By the way, only big representatives sing loudly. The smaller ones also sing, but so softly that they cannot be heard by the human ear. For a long time, it was believed that only males sing. In 1959, studied 19 species of European cicadas. It turned out that females sing too. However, sound amplifiers are necessary so that a person can hear their sounds.

Some representatives sing so loudly that a person’s ear cannot stand it. It perfectly protects from predators. Such loud cicadas are common, for example, in the deserts of North America.

The cicada with the longest life cycle lives on the same continent. The larva turns into an adult in 17 years. This is a record among insects. However, not all species of the family have been studied. Perhaps other amazing representatives of singing cicadas will open.


What cicada feeds on? The larvae live under the ground, where they feed on the sap of young plant roots. Also suck the juice of the underground part of the stem. What does cicada eat when it grows up? Adult representatives pierce the plant's cell walls with the proboscis and drink the juice. After the insect meal, the juice continues to stand out. A droplet of nutrient fluid forms. It freezes in the air. Manna - so called such droplets.

Thus, the habitat of singing cicadas is a biotope with vegetation. Adults love to sing while sitting in trees and shrubs. The larvae live in the soil under the same woody plants. Singing cicadas are spread all over the world.

Signs that you hear exactly cicada

How to distinguish cicada singing from the sounds of orthoptera? Cicadas take their trills usually during the daytime, especially during the hot noon hours. The fact is that for singing you need a lot of energy. This energy gives solar heat. Only a small number of representatives are awake at twilight time of the day. In this case, the energy is generated by the work of the muscles that are commonly used for flight.

Singing cicada sit on trees and shrubs, usually taller than a man. So if the song is heard from above, then, most likely, it makes a male trill.

Singing Cicada Life Cycle

The female makes an egg hole in the bark of a fresh young branch of a tree or shrub. Lays in the deepening of the egg. They come from the larvae. At first, they can remain on the branches and feed on the juices of the aerial parts of the plant. But then they necessarily fall to the ground and immediately begin to burrow into the ground, where it is difficult to find them to insect consumers. Under the ground is enough moisture, cool, plenty of food. Larvae have digging limbs. Insects are looking for young roots. Vegetation covers are pierced with a coracoid proboscis and suck juice. So they eat from year to 17 years depending on the type of insect. Vegetable juice is not very nutritious, so the development of many representatives is delayed for several years.

In the process of growth, the larvae molt several times. Before the last molt come to the surface. Sit on the trunk of the nearest tree. Here an adult goes out of a larva. This is a long, not minute process. After leaving the old skin, the cicada dries its wings for about an hour. Adult individual lives 1-2 months. Thus, the cicada has a life cycle with an incomplete transformation, that is, the pupal stage is absent.

Representative of Central Russia

Mountain cicada (Cicadetta Montana) is the only representative living in central Europe. The rest of these cicadas live south. Mountain cicada is smaller than its tropical relatives. The name "mountain" is not entirely successful, because this species lives mainly on the plains.

Research typical representative of Australia

David Young is an Australian research scientist. He is studying the singing of Australian green cycads (Cyclochila australasias).

Making it, sitting in a tree, begins to sing. After some time, the remaining males join the "soloist". It turns out a whole chorus. Usually one insect sings for a few seconds or minutes. The invertebrate choir continues to sing for a long time. So males attract females.

Singing a green cicada is perceived as a long loud sound without changing the pitch. David Young, choosing an individual sitting alone, recorded the song on the tape recorder. Then analyzed the record on the computer. It turned out that cicada singing is a multitude of impulses. And the right and left tools work in turn. The number of pulses was usually 230 and sometimes reached 4000 per second.

In the process of chirring singing cicadas take a special stand. The male raises the abdomen, while the wings diverge slightly to the sides.

Other representatives of the sub-order cicadas

In addition to the singing representatives, the cicadas include the family Tsikadki, Gorbatki, Pennitsy. They all have the same appearance. However, they also have hind jumping limbs.

Cicadas are smaller compared to real cicadas. Their front wings are dense, leathery. These creatures are very mobile, they fly better than cicadas of choristers. Both larvae and adults live on grassy vegetation.

The humpbacks have curly outgrowths on the pronotum. The most diverse in South America.

Pennits are often brightly colored. Their front wings are tight. They jump beautifully, but at danger they fall to the ground, where they are harder to notice. Penny larvae have a special adaptation from drying. They form around themselves a foamy mass, for which they received their name.

The larva secretes a special fluid - the undigested body sap of plants. In the larva live symbionts that secrete mucin. Mucin is added to the selection. It provides fluid viscosity. The larva foams the sap of the plants with the mucin, releasing air bubbles into the mass of the spiracles and beating them with quick movements of the legs. So she turns in her wet house. Penny cicada live throughout the world. In Madagascar, for example, droplets of foam are falling from the trees - the discharge of cicadas, as if it is raining.

Attitude of people to cicadas

Peoples attitude to cicadas varies greatly. So, the Romans really disliked the crackling singing of these insects. The ancient Greeks also respected cicadas, loved to listen to their music and even depicted insects on coins. In Spain, cicadas are very fond. You can always see the souvenirs with the image of these creatures on sale.

The appearance of the larvae

The broad hips and legs of the forelimbs are equipped with powerful spikes and are adapted to the digging movements. Such a structure of the larvae is related to the peculiarities of their habitat remote from the soil surface: usually it is the root part of the stems and the root system of plants.

Coloring nymph depends on the type and age. Most of them are whitish. The teardrop-shaped larva of the striped ficus is brown. On the wider front of their body are dark and light stripes longitudinally.

Dark Nymphs 1st and 2nd ages have a yellowish tint. On their abdomen, three gray stripes are clearly visible. The third instar larvae acquire a brownish-gray tint.

In the six-point Tsikadki young nymphs are brown in color, older ages are greenish-yellow, similar to the shade of an adult cicada.

Appearance of adult cicada

On the short head of adult individuals (imago) there are large, bulging, faceted eyes, and between them are three simple ocelli, which are located in the shape of a triangle.

The head of the imago is equipped with short segmented antennae and also with a segmented oral apparatus in the form of a proboscis. With it, cicadas suck the sap of plants. Therefore, along with other species of insects, they are referred to above the order of the trunk.

The wings have unequal length: the rear ones are shorter than the front ones. Partial bright coloration of generally transparent wings also depends on the species of the cicada.

Of the six pairs of strong legs, the front is distinguished by wide hips, equipped with spikes, the middle pair - by short and also wide thighs. The back of most species is elongated, jumping. The legs of all pairs of legs are cylindrical.

At the end of the fat abdomen, the males have a copulative apparatus, and the females have egg deposits, with which they pierce the skin of various parts of the plant and lay eggs.

The peculiarity of cicadas is the unusual, complex structure of the vocal apparatus of the males. This allows them to emit characteristic sounds that attract females who do not have the ability to chatter.

How do these pests multiply?

Females lay eggs in the fall in the soft tissue of leaves, stems, in the basal part of winter cereals and carrion.

Depending on the species, larvae appear from eggs within 30–40 days. They go through several stages of molting and, accordingly, are four or five ages. The wintering stage in different types of cicadas are eggs or larvae.

In the spring overwintered nymphs begin to fawn and move into the stage of adult insects.

Eggs are laid by females of different generations, and as a result, over the summer cicadas develop in two or three generations. From early summer to late autumn, larvae of different ages and adult individuals can be found in the fields.


The most famous of the two and a half thousand species of these pests belong to the family of tsikadok.

Cicadas such as

  • six-point,
  • dark
  • striped,
  • grape,
  • club-shaped,
  • rose,
  • potato

Their structure, features of reproduction, nature and objects of food in general are very similar and differ only in details.

Thus, the six-point dikad yellow-green color with six dark dots on the head. The wintering phase is the eggs, the larvae appear from late April to early May. The development of this type of insect occurs in two or three generations.

Dark cicadas have the highest level of danger as the causative agent of a viral infection of cereal.

Males are brownish-black, females are yellowish. The clear wings of the females are marked with a brown spot.

Older larvae hibernate on cereals. The inspiration and appearance of adult cicadas occurs much earlier than other species. Dark cicadas develop in two generations.

Harm cicadas

The damage to agriculture from these insects is very large, given that plants and larvae (nymphs) and adults (imago) are damaging.

The range of their food is quite wide:

  1. almost all crops,
  2. most vegetables
  3. grain and fodder legumes,
  4. oilseeds, starch and sugar crops,
  5. grapes
  6. watermelons
  7. garden berries,
  8. roses

The power mechanism of cicadas is quite simple. Adults and nymphs emerging from the egg pierce the plant's skin with a jointed proboscis. They inject a special toxin into it, attach themselves and suck the juice from deep-seated tissues. Therefore, they are referred to sucking pests (such as wheat thrips).

Objects of attack of young larvae are plant stems, lower leaves of cereals. Older nymphs, like adult cicadas, use their upper parts, leaves, root part of winter crops, plant roots, and even tree bark. With age, the appetite of the larvae increases. Over the summer, several generations develop.

Whitish spots appear at the site of injections, which merge to occupy an increasing area. Plants weaken, prematurely losing discolored and deformed leaves. Even for this reason, over 25% of the crop can be missed.

The most noticeable loss of berries - they are close to almost one hundred percent: pathogens of various infectious diseases freely penetrate into the puncture sites. It is not possible to cure plants from them. Outwardly, it becomes very noticeable on a dark sticky coating, which, covering the berries, significantly affects their taste.

Chemical control methods

Preventive measures alone are usually not enough to fully control the multiplication of cicadas over the entire area of ​​large fields and gardens. It is necessary to apply including pesticides that destroy a fairly wide range of species of pests.

It is important not to forget about safety measures when using these chemicals that can damage human health.

The use of insecticides such as “Fastak” and “Karate 050 EC” of contact-intestinal action is effective against cicadas.

After two spraying cycles with a 10 day break, the pest is completely disappears. Harvest can be collected 20 days after the last treatment insecticide "Karate 050 EU". The first of the drugs is not accompanied by such restrictions: with the correct use of these doses, it does not have a harmful effect on plants.

Edge strips are usually treated with seedlings of winter cereal crops infected with cicadas, with their concentration ranging from 55 to 145 individuals per square meter. Detect adult insects is easy.

The principles of pollination in vegetable gardens are the same.

Perform these works in the windless evening. Used to carry out the treatment spray, a broom can not be used.

  1. You only need to prepare the required amount of working solution, since it is forbidden to save it.
  2. Depending on the area to be dusted, in 1 liter of water it is necessary to dissolve the indicated amount of insecticide on the package and filter the resulting solution.
  3. In a large container to place half of the specified volume of water. Then pour the prepared solution into it and mix well.
  4. Finally, add the remaining half of the water to the desired volume, continuing to mix the contents.
  5. Пустую емкость, освободившуюся от раствора препарата, сполоснуть водой 2 раза и добавить в общую массу. Еще раз профильтровать ее и вылить в бак распылителя.
  6. По окончании работ вымыть его раствором кальцинированной соды.

До и после выполнения работы необходимо тщательно помыть руки и сменить одежду. During the manipulations, do not touch the face with your hands, much less eat or drink.

The effectiveness of this method is undoubtedly very high.

By applying agrotechnical, sanitary and chemical methods of dealing with larvae and adult cicadas in a complex in a timely manner, it is possible to successfully combat this common pest of field and garden crops. Saving a rich harvest is achievable!


Psaltoda claripennis - cicada, the surface of the wings which is seated microscopic needles. Such a surface kills bacteria on the wings. Scientists plan to use the discovery to create bactericidal materials.

Insects are interesting if you look at them closely. Scientists have yet to study many types of cicadas and other invertebrates. Many amazing discoveries have been made in science, and we have yet to learn new secrets from the life of insects, their structure and behavior. Many arthropods lead a complex lifestyle. Cicadas differ in an unusual structure, are champions among insects. Moreover, they are very beautiful. Who saw the massive emergence of adult singing cicadas from the last stage of the nymph larvae will clearly not remain indifferent.

The appearance of insects

Cicadas are large insects. The body length of most species reaches 5 cm, while some tropical representatives grow to 15 cm. The head of the cicadas is short. If you look closely, you can see 5 eyes in the photo of a cicada insect: 2 large sides and 3 small ones forming a triangle on the crown. It is believed that these insects have excellent eyesight, so they notice enemies from a far distance.

Cicadas have two pairs of wings, and the front pair is significantly longer than the back. The wings are usually transparent, but in some species they are brightly colored, while others are black. The abdomen of the insect is large and fat, in males it goes into a copulation apparatus, and in females it goes into an egg-deposit. Also, males from females are distinguished by the presence of a vocal apparatus, located behind the hind limbs on the underside of the posteriorly chest.

Features of life and behavior

The number of cicadas reaches 500 species. Chirping insect lives on all continents except Antarctica. Most often, cicadas are found in tropical and subtropical countries. Many of them in India, South America and the Mediterranean countries.

Cicadas settle on bushes and trees. Though they can fly, they prefer to lead a calm, even lazy lifestyle. Males wake up only during the hot time of the day and begin to chatter, beckoning the females. The lifespan of the song insects is long enough. The mountain cicada develops over two years, the common cicada lives for 4 years, and the representative of the North American entomofauna periodic cicada lasts 17 years.

Cicadas feed exclusively on plant food. Moreover, the diet of different stages of insects is somewhat different: the larvae feed on plant roots, and adults - plant juices. Despite good eyesight, cicadas are often the victims of predatory insects. The main enemy is an earthen wasp that hunts on cicadas and feeds its offspring.

Reproduction and development

After mating, the females lay their eggs under the bark of the trees. After a while, thick, clumsy larvae emerge from the eggs. They have solid smooth skin and short limbs that are adapted to dig the soil. Before turning into adults, the larvae live in the ground for several years.

It feeds on young stems first, then the roots of plants. Larvae quickly gain weight and molt several times. After that they pupate, develop wings and turn into adult insects.

Love songs

Singers call cicadas because of their unique chirping. When one male begins to sing his serenade, others immediately begin to sing along with him. Such a chorus of cicadas can drown out even the whistle of a locomotive. For singing you need a lot of energy, which insects take from solar radiation, therefore, it is more likely to hear the voice of singers during the daytime. Sometimes, to hide from predators, males chirp at dusk.

The structure of the vocal apparatus

The vocal apparatus has three cavities: two side and one median. Inside the median are two pairs of membranes: foldable and shiny, similar to a mirror. The middle cavity performs the function of a resonator. The lateral ones open outward due to the holes, and the eardrum is located on the inner wall. A special muscle is attached to it, the contraction and relaxation of which leads to the oscillation of this membrane. These vibrations emit a metallic chime, which with the help of resonance in the middle cavity turns into a loud piercing sound.

Cicada pests

Cicadas are great singers, but unfortunately they are dangerous pests of cultivated plants. This is due to the nature of the nutrition of various stages of development of the insect. We already know that the larvae eat the roots, and the adults - the soft parts of the plant. Therefore, the destruction of crops occurs with a vengeance.

Young larvae eat the stems and lower leaves of plants. After the first molts, the nymphs start to infect the upper leaves, the basal part of the stem and the roots. Adult insects continue their evil mission, absorbing not only the leaves and soft stems, but even the bark.

Almost all cicadas destroy:

  • cereals,
  • legumes,
  • most of the vegetable crops,
  • sugar and starch plants,
  • oilseeds
  • melons,
  • grapes
  • berry bushes,
  • roses and other ornamental plants.

Cicadas are sucking pests because of their feeding habits. Both the larvae and adults with their sharp proboscis pierce the thick skin of plants and inject a special secret inside. Then the insects stick to the plant and drink the cell sap. There, where the meal occurred, there are light spots that gradually merge and expand, affecting a large area. Over time, the plant loses its color and fades. If we add to this a violation of mineral metabolism due to the defeat of the roots, then it is possible to understand why the cicadas are considered the cause of significant crop loss.

Cicadas are small insects. They feed on plant juices, lay eggs on their sprouts and are carriers of viral plant diseases.

Squad - Equal-winged

Length: some up to 15 mm, an average of 2-10 mm.

Color: green, it masks cicadas (see photos of insects) on the leaves, some are painted very brightly.

Marriage period: The end of the summer.

Eggs: lay in small piles, attach them to the plants.

Incubation period: depends on temperature, sometimes development occurs in winter.

Habits: keep in groups.

What feeds on: plant juices.

Lifespan: up to a year.

More than 5 000 species belong to the family of cicadas. About 300 species of this family live in Central Europe.

Cicadas are one of the most common insects. They are found almost all over the world. They are kept in huge groups. A large number of these insects can empty an entire field. Like bugs, cicadas belong to the order of the wings.


In the world there are less than five thousand species of tsikadok. All of them, like other members of the same-wing squad, undergo an incomplete transformation cycle in their development. Most species of cicadas have a small, elongated body and green color, but there are also quite brightly colored species.

Cicadas are very agile and extremely mobile insects. Immediately they can quickly run aside or jump a considerable distance. Thanks to its long wings, cicadas also fly pretty well. Cicadas are not similar in appearance to their distant relatives - aphids. These insects rather are united by the way they consume vegetable juices. In the regions, especially rich in food, there are whole swarms of insects of this species. Different types of these cicadas prefer different plants.


Cicadas are relatives of singing cicadas, which are known for their loud "singing" that can be heard at night in the crowns of trees in the tropical and subtropical forest. Only 50 years ago, zoologists established that ordinary cicadas can "sing", but their "voices" are not perceived by the human ear if you do not use a special technique.

With the help of streamer cicada attract partner. Individuals of both sexes in the mating season are found precisely because of "singing". Moreover, the "singing" female tries not to move from her seat, since the male is just taking her call. After mating, the female lays testicles on plants.

First, she makes an incision on the plant with the help of an egg deposit, and then puts eggs into it. Here the eggs spend the whole winter. Their development begins only next spring.

Cicadas are insects with an incomplete transformation cycle, that is, their larvae do not make cocoons. Larvae hatch from the testicles, wingless, diminished copies of adult insects. They immediately begin to eat. In the process of growth, the larva molts five or six times and only then develops into an adult insect (imago). Adult insects go in search of a partner, and the development cycle repeats again. Cicadas usually live a little less than a year.


Cicadas feed on plant juices, such as cereals, potatoes, apples, sugar beets, or roses. In these insects, the developed oral apparatus is piercing-sucking type. Inside the proboscis are long and sharp setae.

The proboscis of insects is the modified lips, and the setae are the modified jaws. The bristles are contained in the trunk-proboscis, as in a case. Seta moves freely in the case, but can not bend. Therefore, it easily pierces the skin of plants. Cicada, puncturing the peel, simultaneously releases a small amount of saliva. The fluid pressure in the plant is so high that the juice itself flows through the proboscis and esophagus into its stomach. Due to the peculiarities of the saliva of the cicada, the plant sap does not thicken, and, in addition, the saliva facilitates the digestion process.

For a long time, viruses that cause various diseases in plants can live in the saliva of tsikadok. Many cicadas carry dangerous viral plant diseases. The striped tsikadka is the carrier of the disease of oats, and the ribbed tsikadka is the famous carrier of the disease of the nightshade. Numerous colonies of tsikadok - serious enemies for agriculture.


Cicadas are numerous in the summer, when most plants bloom and prepare for fruiting, so they can be food for these insects. Shortly after the appearance of the first leaves, the cicadas appear. You can observe how they walk, jump and fly from one plant to another. One has only to shake up the plant so that the frightened tsikadki first fell to the ground, and then jumped or flew away. In the summer on the stalks of grass you can often see white lumps having similarities with small piles of foam. If such a small group is carefully deployed, then inside you can see the larva of the common pennitsa. Foam is a house that the larva managed to build "with their feet."


  • The little pink cycard, which lives in Europe and North America, dissolves cellulose with saliva and then sucks the juice. In addition to roses, she feeds on fruit trees and currants.
  • In the mating season, cicadas sing in the help of an organ resembling a dulcimer. A special muscle contracts and pulls the membrane into the cymbal. When the muscle returns to its original position, the membrane straightens, changing it produces sound. This can be repeated from 170 to 480 times per second. .
  • Cicadas fly to the light. In India, people catch rice canopies that fly into the light of street lamps, and sell them as food for birds.

Appearance of cicadas

This is a rather large insect. The length of the cicada body reaches 30-36 millimeters. The head is large, it is wider than pronotum. On the head, on the sides, there are two large, complexly arranged eyes, and in the center there are 3 simple small eyes.

Cicada has a long proboscis, which reaches the end of the midrime. This proboscis, along with a striped shield that resembles a visor, looks rather menacing.

Young individual.

Males of cicadas have a complex organ with the help of which they publish their “songs”.

The wings are very strong and dense, if you take the cicada in your hands, it seems that you can cut your fingers on the wings, so hard they are. The color is black; on the head and pronotum there is a yellow pattern. The wings are transparent.

Cicadas life cycle

Females lay eggs under the skin of plant stems. Larvae come out of eggs, which spend 2-4 years underground. And the adult individual lives about a month.

Cicada larva has impressive claws, like a praying mantis. Because of these claws, you might think that the larva is a voracious predator, but it is not, this tool is necessary for the larvae to dig the earth.

Cicada larvae are very voracious.

Young larvae live and feed on plant stems, and when they grow up, they burrow underground and begin to consume roots. The life of the larvae depends on the type of cicada.

The larva sheds many times, and it has the makings of wings. The last molt occurs, as a rule, on a tree, as a result an adult cicada appears.

Cicadas diet

Cicadas, at each stage of their life, feed only on plant sap. The juice they produce, performing punctures in the stems and roots, like larvae. At the same time, plants do not seriously suffer from this.


But during the period of laying eggs, females cause harm by laying eggs under the skin or bark of plants, thereby violating their integrity. Therefore, cicadas are considered to be pests in agriculture, as they damage grapes.