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Got a complaint? Let's Talk

Cicada exuvum

Tibicen cicada exuviaPine Crest Cemetery - Chelmsford - With the success of finding a Tibicen lyricen nymph last night, I'm back again to see if I can find some more live specimens. Unfortunately, I didn't find any but I am noticing a lot of exuvia on the headstones within the cemetery. It makes me wonder if upon emerging from the ground if Cicadas can see all that well. I mean after all, if you spend in some cases 3 - 9 years underground during your long development in total darkness, it makes one wonder if you'd be able to see. No wonder Cicada nymphs can molt just about anywhere. I wonder if they find places to molt by sense of feel as opposed to site.

As you know, yours truly walks around and looks at all the trees in cemeteries but from a bystander standing by I could be doing almost anything and I always get questions like "Are you looking for diseases?" "Does that tree need to be cut down?" things like that and I usually set people straight.

So I'm walking around doing my inspection of the trees and photographing insects of interest and this older woman pulls up beside me in her car.

"Do you work for the Cemetery?", she asked.
"No, I'm here doing research on a particular species of insect.", I respond.
"Oh, because if you did work for the cemetery, I was going to complain."
"What seems to be the problem ma'am?"
"Well, the state of this cemetery, just look at it."

So I look around and I really see nothing wrong. To me everything is as it should be.

"I don't quite understand ma'am."
"Well, look at all the dead grass everywhere." "I had to clean around my husbands grave and it took me a very long time." "I just wish they would pick up the dead grass."

Instead of espousing the benefits of keeping dead grass on a freshly cut lawn which helps to keep moisture in during the day I decided to go a different route.

"Well, ma'am, I know the guys that work for the Chelmsford Town Cemetery department and I can tell you that there are several cemeteries in Chelmsford and there is only a small handful of men for all the cemeteries."

"That may be true but there is no need to have the dead grass.", she said.
"Well, I'm sure if the town of Chelmsford alotted more money in the budgets to hire more men, I'm sure it could be taken care of but one can only do so much with the money on hand." "I'm sure they are short staffed."

And that was that, she was gone. I have met the guys from the Town of Chelmsford Cemetery department last year and they are all a bunch of good guys.

Ah, the trials and tribulations of studying Cicadas. I wonder what other adventures I'm going to get into today.

Date Posted: 2005-07-15 Comments: (0) Show CommentsHide Comments


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