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Tibicen linnei - Neotibicen linnei

Tibicen linnei - Neotibicen linnei
Durham County, North Carolina, USA
July 13, 2004
Yet another freshly-emerged (?) cicada that climbed onto a brick wall. See comments for possible identifications. (See other image for suggestion this is T. auletes.)

Size TBA--PC (compare with brick)

Images of this individual: tag all
Tibicen linnei - Neotibicen linnei Tibicen linnei - Neotibicen linnei

Tibicen sp. (linnei complex) ?
There are cicadas that pop up here in central NC that seem to defy the expectations of conventional identification (in this case "T. linnei"). One would think that by default this makes it easier to place the cicada under another taxon - WRONG.

In discussions with other cicada specialists, there appears to be collapse with regards to our conventional thinking. How do we apply diagnostic tests and traits to cicadas collected from different places across the vast regions of this country, especially when there is discontinuity ... populations and individuals that just "do not fit" nicely into our "little boxes" (=taxa)?

Reference images of another such cicada


Gerry and I have discussed several cicada images in great detail over the last year. Although it is agreed that T. canicularis is not "known" to be part of the North Carolina fauna beyond the mountains (southern most extent of the canicualris range).

Complicating things, neither of these cicadas pictured are congruent with davisi or winnemana either. The heads are far too narrow for davisi (note the pronotum is wider at its widest point than are the heads), the size/length too large, and the coloration and pruinosity characters are not consistent with a teneral winnemana...but are typical of linnei as seen here in c. NC.

Moved from Scissor-grinder.

Moved from Tibicen.

I have come to the personal conclusion that Tibicen species are highly variable both geographically, and by age. Older specimens often have the waxy bloom worn off of them, and are darker in general. Maybe someday I'll get a handle on them....

Actually, you are partially correct
With regards to the above images, these are not T. chloromera at all, they are either T. canicularis or T. davisi. Both of these species are very similar in appearance. The only way to tell them apart is to be familiar with the distributions of these species in your area and of course the male's mating calls are quite different. Unfortuantely, I believe T. davisi and T. canicularis are prominant in North Carolina.

The waxy build-up happens over time, it does not get less as the cicada get's older but actually increases with age. I've documented this on Tibicen species in my area. Immediately after the cicada molts to a full adult, the waxy build-up doesn't start to appear until several days after.

Here is a T. canicularis picture that I took last year. As you can see it is very similar to the above images.

However, within a species there are definately slight color variations which make Tibicen Cicadas very difficult to identify.

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