With the hot, dry, summer days comes nature's singers, the cicada and the cricket. And, they have made their presence known in our area this week. One afternoon, as I passed a group of post oak trees, I could hear the song of the cicada above the noise of the Kubota engine, so when I read that these insects produce sounds among the loudest of all insects, I could believe it. Although it's unlikely, their sound can cause permanent hearing loss in humans, should the cicada sing just outside the listener's ears. They produce their loudest "music" during the hottest time of the day; perhaps our hot temperatures are ideal for their concerts!
Crickets -- ahh-- I hate crickets! There's just something about being awaken during the night by the song (chirping) of a cricket that annoys me to no end! And after doing a little research on crickets, I learned that the male does all the chirping, and he doesn't do it by rubbing his legs together. It seems there are "teeth" on the bottom of each wing and the noise is made by rubbing these teeth together, and he has four types of song: a calling song, a courting song, an aggressive song, and a copulatory song.
Last night, around 12:00 a.m., the devil entered a cricket, and soon I was wide awake. It almost made me wish I wore hearing aids that could be taken out and I'd never hear anything again until morning. I knew I couldn't go back to sleep with that shrill "music" streaming down the hallway and into my bedroom, so I got up and walked quietly toward the culprit. The closer I got to the laundry room, the more shrill the noise; then -- silence. I was close to him! I turned on the lights but didn't see anything along the walls, nothing around the washing machine or window, so I got the fly swat and waited for him to resume his concert. Then I saw a little black blob in the corner by the door, and when I tried to pull it out, the blob jumped! That swat was on him in a split second! That was the end of his music!
Thinking back on it, I realize he was singing his calling song, which is fairly loud, trying to attract females and telling other males, "This is my territory! Stay out!" Please, don't attract females to this house! And, I don't know about the folklore which says cricket chirpings are signs of rain; it hasn't had any effect so far. Also, in some countries, a loud chirp means money is coming in, and the cricket must not be killed. Oh dear! What have I done?
Be happy, Charlotte