Saturday, August 30, 2008

Compromising Position

I've been fascinated by cicadas (no, they are NOT locusts) for most of my life. As a kid, I would collect their shed skins to play with, and sometimes capture them when I climbed trees. I even had one "bite" me once. They have a proboscis that the pupae use to suck juices from tree roots. Though it's vestigial in the adult, they can still jab you!

This is the first time I've been fortunate enough to see one in the process of molting. You can see the wings still shriveled and damp at the edges. I snapped this pic and went to drop off the trash, and by the time I got back they were already stretched taut. In another 5-10 minutes it would have flown off, and I never would have seen it.

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