Saturday, August 12, 2006

More bug news

You thought I was exaggerating about the cicadas waking me up, didn't you? Well, I wasn't, and now I have the pictures to prove it. This afternoon I checked right outside our bedroom window, and found the culprits almost within arms length. I knew they were there, but The Man has been chasing them away every morning (while I lie there grumbling), and I hadn't realized just how close - or how many - there were.

Our window, like most Japanese windows, is frosted. It also has an opaque corrugated plastic sheet mounted outside the window, to stop the neighbours (and/or passers-by) from looking in. (Haven't Japanese architects ever heard of curtains?) This means, of course, that we cannot look out, either, except for a small gap under the corrugated plastic when the frosted window is open.

When I bent down to look under the corrugated plastic, I discovered that I could see SEVEN cicadas right outside our window. By poking my camera under the gap, I was able to photograph six of them. They were sitting there looking innocent and not making a sound, but I know what they can do. They do it every morning. This is a cicada CHOIR, and they're LOUD.

Here are the photographs. The first three are on the upright trunk of the tree, and the second three are on a branch. There was another one I couldn't get a picture of. It was on the other side of the trunk, and I couldn't get the camera to focus. (Actually I was worried I would drop the camera out of the window.)

After I took these photos I poked at the cicadas until they flew away. I was in no mood to be kind.

I was talking to a friend tonight about this, and she said,

"Isn't it funny how they come back? They seem to choose a tree and that's it. That's the only one they want to be in."

I had noticed this. The Man chases them away every morning when they wake us up, and they are always back pretty quickly. He hadn't told me how many there were, though, and I hadn't looked so closely before.

After my phonecall I went to check if the cicadas were back already. They weren't. I'm hoping that since I disturbed them after it became dark they won't be able to find their way back. I am also hoping they don't use first light (which is unreasonably early) to find their way back. I hope they make their racket somewhere else for a change tomorrow morning.

In other bug news, the kanabun that was enjoying the watermelon so much decided to get generous and share the good watermelon news with its friends, and this afternoon there were three beetles instead of one slurping on watermelon. In this picture you can see only two, but that is because the one on the right is sitting on one of its friends. Maybe that's what friends are for, if you're a kanabun.

They have almost finished the watermelon, in fact. I think I will put out another slice for them in the morning. They are very decorative bugs. I am told that they are also rather destructive to plants, but these ones seem to be interested only in watermelon, so I'm hoping that as long as we keep them supplied with fruit they'll leave everything else alone.


The Editter said...

could you like grease the tree or stick pins in it or something to keep the bug(gers) away?