Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Wild, Wild Life

     Wild Kingdom on a small scale: last night, the bug-census on the rear (outside!) wall of Roseholme Cottage included two cicadas -- one lurking stealthily along a high-mounted lighting conduit (do they hunt in adulthood?*), the other in such a tizzy that he flew right against my head, buzzing, which brought on a certain amount of flailing around on my part (I caught him and brought him into to show Tam, who still doesn't like them, and he flexed his mighty wing muscles the whole time until I took him back out and let him find a safe spot -- and two bright-green katydids, one larger and a bit worse for wear, the other smallish.

     There was a circada on the kitchen's back window this morning, possibly the same one I gave a tour of the house last night.  Fortunately, he wasn't there to serenade. (Male cicadas can turn off their ears.  Many male humans seem to have a similar adaptation,)

     I do wonder, if they could think, what the slender, graceful, melodious, night-shift katydids would think of the squat, sun-worshipping cicadas, who toil grubbily in the darkness for seventeen years before they emerge to find high spots and holler all day.  "Declassé," they might sniff.  "Common.  And Much Too Loud! Oh, but would you look at the shoulders on that one...?"  Fairies and trolls, they are, or as close as one ever sees in real life.

     Tonight, slim pickings, just the usual fat, self-satisfied spiders, who mended their nets earlier and now peacefully seine for a late dinner, and one large, paranoid-acting red ant with ninja aspirations, patrolling the wall.  When I walked my fingers towards the ant, she cocked her antenna, braced and leaped at 'em!  Man, I dunno what they're feedin' ants these days but it's got too darned many vitamins.
* Nope, they're sap-sucking vegans.  Perhaps it was making a long, slow stalk of a tree.  Or just hoping to not get et.


Jeffro said...

Many male humans seem to have a similar adaptation

What's that you say?!? ;)

Anonymous said...

"Many male humans seem to have a similar adaptation"

Jeffro, I think she's talking again.

Mike James

Shermlock Shomes said...

Gumdrop, one of our three Cocker Spaniels, likes 'em. For snacks. From the sound of it they are crunchy good.

Roberta X said...

Interestingly enough, people in many countries eat cicadas, in some cases deep-fried. The female cicada is said to be meatier (and sensitive about it), since she lacks the hollow resonating chambers her male counterpart uses to make such a big noise.


Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

Many male humans seem to have a similar adaptation

13 years of marriage suggests to me that this is hardly restricted to the male of the species :)

On the other hand, the Mrs. is an unabashed liberal, so maybe she doesn't like it when I point out the flaws in her worldview...

Eric said...

On the campus where I work, we have these: They're pretty fierce looking, but quite harmless to humans.

Jennifer said...

I'm sure Tam got her fill of the cicadas back when we all went out to big blogshoot in TN.
Fairies and trolls indeed. I'm glad I'm not the only one so fascinated by the things that creep and crawl.

Robert Fowler said...

(Male cicadas can turn off their ears. Many male humans seem to have a similar adaptation.

It's a gift from God. Or in my case, too many years around very loud machinery.