An Unkindness of Ravens

By Nevermore

MonoMonday – Change

Or, to be more precise, metamorphosis – "a conspicuous and relatively abrupt change in the animal's body structure through cell growth and differentiation".

The chances that this adult cicada is the exact one that moulted from this shell are slim at the least... it's probably not even the same species (they were on different trees).

Some info:

Life cycle: The cicada has the longest life cycle of any insect, ranging from 2 to 17 years.

A rice-shaped egg is laid in tender twigs and plant stems.

The egg hatches into a nymph (the larval stage) and drops to the ground. The nymph burrows into the soil and crawls to a tree root (using its claw-like front legs). The nymph will suck the tree's sap through straw-like mouthparts (called the rostrum). The nymph stage lasts up to 17 years in periodical cicadas; dog day cicadas have a shorter life cycle. There is no pupal stage -- cicadas undergo incomplete metamorphosis.

When the nymph is fully grown and the temperature is optimal, the nymph tunnels to the surface and goes through its final molt (shedding its hard outer skin) and emerges as a winged adult. When the wings dry and harden, the cicada flies in search of a mate. Unlike many other insects, all of the periodical cicadas in an area emerge at once.

Sign in or get an account to comment.